Mumbai: Urmila Matondkar, who contested Lok Sabha election as Congress candidate, is all set to become the member of the legislative council on Shiv Sena ticket. According to reports, chief minister Uddhav Thackeray has personally spoken to the actress, who has agreed to be nominated by the Sena.
Since June 2020, the 12 council seats, which are appointed by the governor from his quota, have fallen vacant in the legislative council of Maharashtra. The Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government, which is an alliance of Shiv Sena, NCP and Congress, on Thursday decided to recommend 12 names to governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari for their nomination to the Upper House. All three parties will get four members each.
Under Article 171 of the Constitution, the governor can nominate 12 members with special knowledge or practical experience in the field of literature, art, science, cooperative movement and social service to the state Legislative Council.
Mrs. Matondkar had joined the Congress party in the presence of Rahul Gandhi in New Delhi just ahead of General Loksabha election in 2019 and subsequently she had been given a ticket form North Mumbai seat, but she had lost to BJP’s Gopal Shetty by huge margin. Around five months after she joined the Congress, Ms Matondkar resigned from the party citing “petty in-house politics” in Congress as a reason for quitting the party.
When asked about Ms Matondkar joining the Shiv Sena, its leader Sanjay Raut said, “I have also heard about the speculation that Ms Matondkar will be nominated by the government to the Council. It is the prerogative of the state cabinet, which has authorised CM Uddhav Thackeray to take a decision.”
Recently, Mrs Matondkar was in news for taking on actress Kangana Ranaut over her remarks in which she had likened the law and order situation in Mumbai to Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK). She had said that Kangana should first think about her home state of Himachal Pradesh. Both the actresses engaged in a war of words.
Apart from Urmila Matondkar, the names of Marathi actor and Shiv Sena leader Aadesh Bandekar, singer Anand Shinde, BJP-turned-NCP leader Eknath Khadse, farmer leader Raju Shetti are also doing rounds.
An NCP leader, requesting anonymity, said that BJP-turned-NCP leader Eknath Khadse, farmer leader Raju Shetti, playback Anand Shinde, Yashwant Dingare are among the top contenders for the nomination from the party quota. They are expected to get approval from the party chief too soon.
From Shiv Sena’s quota, names of Sachin Ahir, Varun Sardesai, Milind Narvekar and Aadesh Bandekar are also in the reckoning. While the Congress is likely to field its spokesperson Sachin Sawant, MPCC working president Muzaffar Hussain, former Rajya member Rajni Patil and singer Aniruddha-Vankara.