The Bharatiya Janata Party, the ruling coalition partner in Maharashtra, has chosen to withdraw from the race in the by-elections for the Andheri East Assembly constituency, a prominent leader said here on Monday.
The declaration was made by the state BJP president Chandrashekhar Bawankule, who also stated that Murji Patel, the party’s candidate, will withdraw his papers on Monday evening, the deadline for withdrawal.
With this, Rutuja Ramesh Latke, a candidate for the Shiv Sena (Uddhav Balasaheb Thackeray) party from Andheri East, is practically guaranteed to win.
Latke applauded the development as Bawankule gave assurance that Patel would not run as an independent or rebel.
Following requests from a Balasahebanchi Shiv Sena MLA, Sharad Pawar, the leader of the Nationalist Congress Party, Raj Thackeray, the leader of the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena, as well as other party leaders, the BJP changed its mind.