In a last minute twist, the BJP
on Tuesday asked one of its four nominees for the May 21 Legislative Council elections to nine seats to withdraw.
On the day of scrutiny of nominations and two days ahead of the withdrawal deadline, the opposition party made Dr Ajit Gopchade withdraw his papers for Ramesh Karad, who hails from Latur, a party leader said.
Karad had already filed his nomination papers.
The election to nine seats became necessary after terms of the sitting MLCs ended on April 24.
While May 11 was the last day of filing nominations, scrutiny of papers was done on Tuesday. The last date of withdrawal of papers is May 14.
Karad had tried to contest the Legislative Council election on NCP ticket in 2018 against Suresh Dhas, who had then quit the NCP to join the BJP, but withdrew his candidature at the last minute.
Karad is a nephew of Pune-based education baron Vishwanath Karad. He was once considered close to BJP leader Pankaja Munde.
Apart from Karad, Gopichand Padalkar, Pravin Datke and Ranjitsinh Mohite-Patil are the BJP's nominees for the polls, which are set to be unopposed.
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