Mukesh Ambani endorsing Congress could put him in the cross hairs with brother Anil Ambani, who has been on the radar of Congress president Rahul Gandhi.
Reliance Industries chairman Mukesh Ambani on Thursday endorsed Milind Deora in a video tweeted by the Congress leader. Deora is contesting from the Mumbai South constituency in Maharashtra in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections.
Deora tweeted a video on Thursday which had shopkeepers and industrialists backing him to win the South Mumbai seat. “Milind is the man for South Bombay,” Mukesh Ambani says in the video.
“Milind has in-depth knowledge of social, economic and cultural ecosystem of the South Bombay constituency. Both micro enterprises and large businesses can thrive in Mumbai. So that attractive new employment opportunities can be created for our talented young,” Mukesh adds.
Mukesh Ambani’s endorsement comes at a time when Congress president Rahul Gandhi is targetting his younger brother Anil Ambani over his involvement in the Rafale deal. Earlier this year, Mukesh Ambani – India’s richest man – had helped Anil avert a crisis by lending him money to settle the Rs 550 crore dues to Ericsson in the nick of time. As per a Supreme Court order, Anil Ambani faced a possible jail term of three months, if his Reliance Communications failed to pay Ericsson. Anil later issued a statement thanking Mukesh for standing by him during trying times.
Besides Ambani, billionaire industrialist and executive vice chairman and managing director of Kotak Mahindra Bank, Uday Kotak also endorsed Deora, saying he “genuinely” felt that the Congress leader will be able to relate to Mumbaikars.
Milind Deora will be up against sitting MP and Shiv Sena leader Arvind Sawant. Deora has already won two elections from the Mumbai South constituency – in 2004 and 2009. He was defeated by Sawant in the 2014 general elections with a margin of over 1.2 lakh votes. Mumbai South will go to polls during the fourth phase on April 29. The counting of votes will be held on May 23.