Prithviraj Chavan ready to enter Sharad Pawar's turf in cricket politics

Published: Nov 05, 2013, 07:43 IST | PTI |

Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan today did not rule out entering the politics of cricket where NCP chief Sharad Pawar is calling the shots

"I cannot tell you what happens in future.....I am interested in cricket", Chavan told reporters when asked whether he would be contesting the elections of the Mumbai Cricket Association in future after recently becoming a member of the Mazgaon Cricket Club. 

Chavan's statement came close on the heels of BJP leader Gopinath Munde's remarks that the situation in Mumbai and Maharashtra is such that there are now only two people who can challenge Pawar in Maharashtra--he and Prithviraj Chavan. "I'm very clear about this. The only reason I entered the MCA election battle was because there was nobody willing to challenge the monopoly of Sharad Pawar.

It's either me or Prithviraj Chavan. Earlier Vilasrao Deshmukh had the strength to do this but he is no more", Munde had said. Replying to questions, Chavan said his relationship with Pawar were "excellent". He said Congress wants an alliance with NCP in coming Lok Sabha polls and each time before the elections the seat- sharing formuala is decided in line with the ground situation.

Chavan's statement came close on the heels of MPCC chief Manikrao Thakre's assertion that Congress wants to contest 29 seats Lok Sabha seats in Maharashtra and is ready to cede 19 seats to NCP. The state Congress chief cited his party's "improved performance" as the reason behind its demand for 29:19 seat-sharing.

"In the 2009 elections, Congress had contested 26 seats, of which it won 17, while NCP had contested 22 seats, of which it could win only eight seats. Similarly, Congress had contested 174 seats in 2009 Maharashtra assembly polls and won 82 seats whereas NCP could win only 62 seats out of 114 seats it had contested. "If we follow these same parameters, our claim for 29 seats in 2014 election will be substantiated," Thakre has said. PTI SPG PAL 11042102 NNNN

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