Former MP Shivajirao Aadhalao Patil’s Possible Party Switch Raises Eyebrows Ahead of Lok Sabha Elections

Pune: Former Member of Parliament, Shivajirao Aadhalao Patil, known for his vocal stance against aligning with parties like the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), has stirred controversy by announcing his readiness to contest the upcoming Lok Sabha elections on an NCP ticket. This abrupt turnaround has not only cast doubt on the credibility of Eknath Shinde’s Shiv Sena but has also sparked questions about the consistency of Aadhalrao Patil’s political principles.

Patil’s volte-face comes mere months after he publicly cited his allegiance to Eknath Shinde’s Shiv Sena, attributing Uddhav Thackeray’s decision to ally with what he deemed a corrupt party like the NCP. However, his sudden willingness to contest under the NCP banner has left many scratching their heads, signalling a seismic shift in the political landscape of Maharashtra.

With the impending announcement of Lok Sabha elections, Maharashtra braces itself for a fierce electoral battle, pitting the BJP-Shiv Sena Shinde group and the NCP Ajit Pawar group Yuti against the Congress-Shiv Sena UBT faction-NCP Sharad Pawar group Aaghadi. The political milieu in the state has been further muddled by the splintering of alliances, notably the fracture between Shiv Sena and the NCP, revealing the unbridled ambition of political leaders vying for power.

The ripple effects of this political upheaval are palpable in constituencies like Shirur, where the NCP is slated to field its candidate. However, the emergence of a contender from Shiv Sena, in the form of three-time MP Shivajirao Aadhalao Patil, has complicated matters. Patil’s alignment with Eknath Shinde’s faction following the Shiv Sena-NCP schism was viewed as a principled stance against corruption. Yet, his recent overture towards the NCP has raised eyebrows and invited scrutiny.

Amidst speculation over the NCP’s candidate for Shirur, Patil’s bid for a ticket has sparked dissent within the party ranks. Pro-Ajit Pawar MLA Dilip Mohite and former Bhosari MLA Vilas Lande have issued stern warnings against nominating Patil, citing his past electoral contests against the NCP. The rift within the party has deepened, with factions aligning themselves based on loyalty to either Patil or the Thackeray family.

As Patil seeks to transition to the NCP fold, apprehension looms among Shiv Sena loyalists who fear backlash from disillusioned constituents. The decision has underscored the power struggle within the Shiv Sena, with detractors accusing Patil and Shinde of opportunism. Conversely, supporters of the Thackeray faction within Shiv Sena view Patil’s move as a vindication of their power hungriness.

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