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Veteran Congress Leader Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil Quits as MLA, Likely to Join BJP

Veteran Congress Leader Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil Quits as MLA, Likely to Join BJP

The Congress leader of Maharashtra submitted his resignation as an MLA to Assembly Speaker Haribhau Bagade at his office here, an official said.

Mumbai: Senior Congress leader in Maharashtra and former leader of opposition in Legislative Assembly Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil submitted his resignation as a member of the Lower House.

The development comes amid reports that he will be joining the BJP along with some Congress MLAs and may be inducted in the Devendra Fadnavis-led state ministry.

Speaking to CNN News18, Radhakrishna Vikhe Pati said, "Unfortunately things happened in such a way that I had no option. I have nothing against my central leadership. But when it comes to the state there are lot of misgivings within the party which forced me to take this decision."

When asked about joining the BJP, Patil said, "Party will take the decision on my joining."

He denied the reports that several other MLAs from the Congress party will be joining the BJP along with him.

However, Abdul Sattar, expelled Congress MLA, was confident about several Congress MLAs resigning from the party and joining the BJP. He said, "Eight to 10 Congress MLAs are in touch with the BJP. We are disappointed with the Congress leadership in Maharashtra. Their way of functioning is the reason behind our decision. State leadership is destroying the party here."

After submitting his resignation, Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil met chief minister Devendra Fadnavis. According to sources, the closed-door meeting was to discuss about Patil's role in the BJP after joining. There are reports that Patil will be given a cabinet berth after he joins the BJP.

Reports of Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil joining the BJP started making rounds after he resigned as the LoP in April, after his son Sujay Vikhe Patil left the Congress and joined the BJP in March. He won with a margin of 2.81 lakh votes from Ahmednagar Lok Sabha constituency. Vikhe Patil had quit as Leader of Opposition in March, days after his son joined the BJP.

(With PTI inputs)