Union Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh has been campaigning hard in Maharashtra. He may have moved to Delhi but he remains a strong contender for the CM's chair if the Congress-NCP comes to power.
In the thick of the election campaign, Vilasrao appears less a central minister, and more a contender for Maharashtra's top job.
At every rally, Vilasrao makes it a point to remind the crowd that he has been the Chief Minister of Maharashtra for not one but two terms.
"Out of the five years of Congress rule, I have been chief minister for 4 years. Now Ashok Chavan is at the helm. And in these 5 years we have taken lots of decisions that benefited the state," said Vilasrao at an election rally.
Ask him about being in the race, and you get the familiar answer.
"It's for high command to decide. I am at a very satisfied place in my life. I have got all I wanted. I was CM, I am in Centre. And now I am totally satisfied," said Vilasrao.
But it's no secret that he's making a strong bid.
Vilasrao had initially backed Ashok Chavan to replace him to counter another rival, Narayan Rane, from becoming chief minister. But Chavan's own ambitions have now triggered an open rivalry between the two Maratha leaders.
"In politics it happens. Some times, some things here there. Barring that once incident of creating new division at Nanded, I have no problem," says Vilasrao.
Vilasrao's low point was the guided tour after the 26/11 attacks, and even a year on, it remains a factor for the high command when the time comes to decide, who will get the top job.