Facts and figures make it easy for Dr Deshmukh to stake claim and try his luck from the winnable constituency on BJP ticket.
Even the dust of Lok Sabha election hustle bustle is yet to settle down, winds of Assembly elections in Maharashtra have started to blow and have virtually taken the ticket aspirants in Nagpur District by storm. The “mouth watering” victories for BJP and Shiv Sena in Nagpur and Ramtek constituencies in the recently held Lok Sabha elections have triggered a tug-of-war among ticket aspirants who also want to taste victories in Assembly elections in Maharashtra scheduled to be held in October-November this year. In this nearest-fruit-situation, West Nagpur and Saoner Assembly seats have apparently appeared on the radars of Deshmukh-Kedar families and members of this group have subsequently geared up to shoot the target. Dr Ashish Deshmukh, son of senior Congress leader Ranjit Deshmukh, has reportedly thrown his hat in the West Nagpur and Saoner ring on BJP ticket. For Dr Ashish Deshmukh, who is Founder of ‘Youth for Vidarbha State’ and Convener of ‘Vidarbha Joint Action Committee,’ the indefinite hunger strike undertaken by him in December last year for the cause of Vidarbha Statehood and subsequent ‘Yuva Elgar Rally’ across the region, will surely come handy in staking the claim for Assembly ticket, sources said.
Dr. Ashish Deshmukh is not new to politics. His stint as students’ leader and active role in students’ union elections is well appreciated in political circles. His father Ranjit Deshmukh’s field of influence has been stretched from West Nagpur to Saoner. Taking advantage of father’s rule, Dr Ashish had jumped into fray and contested Saoner Assembly seat on BJP ticket in the last election. He eventually lost the election but not before forcing Sunil Kedar, another strongman of Saoner, to sweat hard and run for his money. The hard-fought contest is still remembered by Saoner voters.
Since then, Dr Ashish Deshmukh focused his various activities in social and political fields for the past five years. He sweated and sweated in Saoner, a segment of Ramtek constituency, and ensured victory for Shiv Sena candidate in the recent Lok Sabha election. Dr Ashish Deshmukh’s hard work resulted in a strong 30000 lead in Saoner for the victorious candidate.
This time also, Dr Deshmukh has geared up to fight the Saoner seat in the coming Assembly elections on BJP ticket again. However, according to reports, there is possibility that Dr Ashish, instead of Saoner, could be offered West Nagpur seat, a stronghold of BJP, if “good” understanding the party has with Sunil Kedar is put under consideration by think tank. The reported announcement by present MLA from West Nagpur Sudhakar Deshmukh that he will not contest the next Assembly elections is likely to make it easy for Dr Deshmukh to try his luck from the winnable constituency.
Rajeev Ranjan Kushwaha(rajeev.nagpurto