Ashok Chavan new Maharashtra Congress chief; Sanjay Nirupam new Mumbai party chief

Former chief minister Ashok Chavan has been appointed the new Maharashtra Pradesh Congress Committee president, while Sanjay Nirupam will be the new Mumbai party chief, officials said on Monday.

Chavan replaced Manikrao Thakre, who headed the party for seven years. Nirupam took over from Dalit leader Janardhan Chandurkar, who headed the Mumbai Regional Congress Committee for two years.

Ashok Chavan

"I welcome the appointments made by Congress president Sonia Gandhi...I also thank her for giving me the opportunity to serve as the state party head for seven years," Thakre told IANS.

The move came nearly 10 months after the Congress was routed in the Lok Sabha elections in 2014 and four months after it suffered heavy losses in the October 2014 assembly polls.

Both Chavan and Nirupam are expected to revive the party for next polls.

Chavan, 56, was elected as the chief minister in December 2008 in the wake of 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks which claimed the scalp of his predecessor late Vilasrao Deshmukh.

However, he was forced to quit in November 2010 after his name figured in the Adarsh Society scam.

Born in Bihar, Nirupam, 50, is former Shiv Sena MP and executive editor of the party mouthpiece 'Dopaharka Saamana' till he quit the party in 2005.

He joined the Congress and was elected from Mumbai North Lok Sabha constituency in 2009, which he lost by a record margin in 2014.

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