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Mahadev Naik ready to contest Shiroda bypoll as Cong candidate




Former BJP minister Mahadev Naik on Wednesday said that he is interested in contesting bypoll from the Shiroda constituency on Congress ticket.

Speaking to ‘The Navhind Times’, the two-time former BJP legislator said that if Congress offers him ticket for the upcoming by-election in Shiroda constituency, which has fallen vacant after then Congress MLA Subhash Shirodkar resigned in October last year to join BJP, he is ready to fight the by-election.

“BJP has already decided their candidate by inducting Shirodkar into the party. My aim is to defeat Shirodkar. People have told me that I can win the bypoll by contesting on Congress ticket,” said the former industries minister.

As a BJP candidate, Naik had defeated Shirodkar in 2007 and 2012 assembly elections in the Shiroda constituency. However, the

former BJP MLA lost to Shirodkar in 2017 assembly election.

Recalling that he had an 18-year-long stint in Congress from 1984 to 2002 before contesting election on BJP ticket in 2007, Naik said that in fact, he had sought Congress ticket in 1999 and 2002.

He claimed that some people have been conducting a survey in Shiroda constituency and according to them if he contests on Congress ticket, he will surely win the bypoll. Naik also clarified that he is not interested in contesting as an Independent candidate.

“My supporters want me to join Congress. Once the by-election is declared, I will take a final call on contesting it,” he said, declining to reveal whether he had held a formal discussion with Congress leaders.

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