Murji Patel, the likely candidate of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for the Andheri East Assembly by-election, on Wednesday said he was ready to withdraw from the bypoll race if his party asked him to do so.
October 14 is the last date of filing of nominations for the November 3 bypoll.
The Congress and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) have pledged support to the 'Shiv Sena Uddhav Balasaheb Thackeray' party, making Rutuja Latka the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) candidate, while the BJP is likely to field Murji Patel. The stand of the Shinde faction, now called "Balasahebanchi Shiv Sena", on contesting the bypoll is not clear yet.
The bypoll was necessitated by the death of Rutuja Latke's husband and sitting MLA Ramesh Latke earlier this year.
Speaking to reporters here, Patel said, "I am ready to withdraw from the contest if my party BJP asks me so. State Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and Mumbai BJP president Ashish Shelar will take a decision on it. I will abide by the party's decision in this bypoll." In the 2019 state Assembly elections, Patel had contested the election as an independent candidate against Ramesh Latke, but the latter had won. Patel later joined the BJP.
Spokesperson of Sena's Shinde camp Kiran Pawaskar said Shinde and Fadnavis would take a decision regarding who will contest the Andheri East assembly segment bypoll.