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Home > Mumbai > Mumbai News > Article > Lok Sabha elections 2024 Finally BJP fields Udayanraje Bhosale from Satara

Lok Sabha elections 2024: Finally, BJP fields Udayanraje Bhosale from Satara

Updated on: 17 April,2024 06:23 AM IST  |  Mumbai
Dharmendra Jore |

The scion of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj who refused to contest from NCP (Ajit Pawar) remained resolute to contest from his bastion on a BJP ticket

Lok Sabha elections 2024: Finally, BJP fields Udayanraje Bhosale from Satara

BJP’s Udayanraje Bhosale with his supporters

Key Highlights

  1. BJP has met the demand of Udayanraje Bhosale to contest Lok Sabha elections from Satara
  2. Bhosale is the Rajya Sabha member not from the BJP then, but as a member of undivided NCP
  3. Bhosale had quit NCP ahead of the 2019 Assembly polls

Dharmendra JoreBharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has met the demand of Udayanraje Bhosale, the direct descendent of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, to contest Lok Sabha elections from Satara, the former capital of the Maratha Empire. Bhosale is the Rajya Sabha member, yet he chose to be in the field he had won in 2019 general elections, not from the BJP then, but as a member of undivided NCP.

Bhosale had quit NCP ahead of the 2019 Assembly polls and contested a bye-poll against NCP's Shriniwas Patil. He lost to Patil. The defeat was attributed to Sharad Pawar's famous speech in the heavy rains. Later, the BJP rehabilitated Bhosale in the upper house. This time, the party took more than a month, after declaring its first list, to announce Bhosale's nomination on Tuesday. Apparently, the BJP had to convince Ajit Pawar to vacate his claim to the seat for Bhosale, who had refused to be NCP (Ajit)'s candidate.

Bhosale said he had always followed Shivaji Maharaj's ideology of secularism while serving the society. "I have been blessed by the people in the past 30 years. There have been many governments, but it is Narendra Modi's government that has followed Shivaji Maharaj's ideology and governance," he said, adding that he would oppose things that go against the common people.

"Someone told me that I swim against the current. I told him that I'm the current. Here I do not mean Udayanraje alone, but my people who feel the way as I do," he told reporters after his name was declared from BJP's Delhi headquarters. Despite a couple of more undeclared seats in Maharashtra BJP's share, Udayanraje was the only name announced on Tuesday.     

Sharad Pawar has fielded MLC Shashikant Shinde in Satara. Shinde has begun campaigning with a slogan "Raja ka beta hi raja nahi banega (king's son will not be the king)". Bhosale's relative from Kolhapur's Maratha royal family, Shahu Maharaj Bhosale has been fielded by the Congress in Kolhapur. Shahu Maharaj's elder son Sambhaji Raje was nominated by the BJP in the Rajya Sabha when the Maratha quota agitation was at its peak in 2016. The father had consistently taken a position to criticise the BJP regime. 

In view of Maratha sentiments, the BJP's denying Udayanraje a seat would have been a political disaster. The MP had stayed put in Delhi to meet the senior BJP leaders to affirm his claim. He refused to get bogged down, staged a massive show of strength upon return, and began campaigning in close quarters even before his nomination was officially declared. BJP leaders said the party had always respected the Maratha royals. The Satara seat will go to polls on May 7 in the third phase. 

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