Mumbai : The ruling Shiv Sena it seems is desperately trying woo BJP corporators in Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation to bring down the BJP strength there. Three BJP corporators on Wednesday joined the Sena even while the parties are preparing to strengthen the base for civic-body polls.
According to available information, Corporator Aparna Gavte, Deepa Gavte, and Navin Gavte joined the Sena. They joined the party in the presence of Uddhav Thackeray, Eknath Shinde, Rajan Vichare and Anil Parab. The CM Thackeray tied the Shiv Bandhan (saffron thread) on their wrist and welcomed them into the party. Interestingly, the corporators are ardent supporters of Navi Mumbai strongman Ganesh Naik, who joined the BJP before the 2019 Assembly elections. “We are going to contest the upcoming municipal elections from Shiv Sena,” said Aparna Gavte.
Their announcement that they are joining the Shiv Sena, sending political ripples across party lines since the municipal elections of the Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation are likely to take place soon in the New Year. Former NMMC standing committee chairman, Navin Gavte, his wife Aparna Gavte and their close relative, Deepa Gavte, announced that they are joining Sena. Political observers said that the Gavtes have decided to change parties over their earlier controversy with regards to a few illegal constructions in Dighe and Airoli.
Political observers surprised that Sena had decided to honour the three Gavte corporators by taking them into their fold. Several social workers have been consistently complaining about the illegal constructions in Dighe, wherein the Gavte’s names are involved. In 2017, the then NMMC commissioner Tukaram Mundhe had ordered that these three corporators be disqualified over this issue. However, the Gavtes got an interim relief order from the Bombay high court and continued as corporators.