Congress names Sanjay Mahakalkar as Party’s Group Leader in NMC

Nagpur: Finally, Congress on Saturday has named senior Corporator Sanjay Mahakalkar as party’s Group Leader who will eventually become Leader of Opposition in BJP-dominated Nagpur Municipal Corporation.

Earliers, the two observers, deputed by MPCC, held a marathon six-hour meeting with all the party Corporators and office-bearers of city Congress. MPCC had deputed Vijay Deshmukh and Arif Naseem Khan as observers to oversee election of Group Leader of Congress Party for Nagpur Municipal Corporation. The observers met Congress Corporators at Ravibhavan from 10 am to 3 pm to finalise the name for the post. Congress had bagged barely 29 seats in 151 member NMC House and this debacle immediately intensified factional feud.

The observers discussed the name with each Corporator in a one-to-one meet and sought to know their views before taking a final call in consultation with MPCC President Ashok Chavan. The two observers also met office-bearers of City Congress Committee including Vikas Thakre. The two Congress leaders also met former Union Minister Vilas Muttemwar and another senior leader Abhijit Wanjari.

The MPCC, in a letter to Nagpur Divisional Commissioner, has stated that Sanjay Madhukarrao Mahakalkar has been appointed as Congress Party’s Group Leader in NMC for a period of two and half year. The letter with Mahakalkar’s name as Group Leader is necessary for registration with the office of Divisional Commissioner as has been made mandatory by State Election Commission.

Names of senior Corporators Praful Gudadhe Patil and Sanjay Mahakalkar were in the forefront for the post of Leader of Opposition in NMC. But the mantle has fallen on Sanjay Mahakalkar.

The City Congress chief Vikas Thakre, who has resigned from the post in the wake of debacle in the just concluded NMC poll, said that the newly-elected Corporator from Prabhag 10 Gargi Chopra quit the post on “personal reasons” but she will be persuaded to take back her resignation. “I am just now going to her residence and will talk to her. Gargi will be persuaded to take back her resignation,” said Thakre after the meeting.