We will oppose any such decision," the NCP leader said. Erstwhile Satara state was created by the British in 1818 after the Third Anglo-Maratha War and annexed by them in 1849 using the Doctrine of lapse.
On a day Udayanraje Bhosale, a direct descendant of Chhatrapati Shivaji, quit the NCP to join the BJP, the Sharad Pawar-led party alleged that Narendra Modi government was “luring” royals by promising them a permission to sell lands in their erstwhile Princely states. Earlier in the day, Bhosale joined the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in Delhi in the presence of top saffron party leaders, including party president Amit Shah and Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis. On the occasion, Shah said it was a matter of happiness for the BJP that a descendant of the Maratha king has joined it, and asserted that Bhosale’s presence will help it in the upcoming assembly elections.
The Satara MP has quit his Lok Sabha membership to join the BJP. Addressing reporters in Mumbai, NCP chief spokesperson Nawab Malik reiterated that the Sharad Pawar-led party will retain the Satara seat in the future byelection. “We have some information. Modi Saheb has deployed some people to see that royals join the BJP,” Malik alleged. According to present day laws, lands in the erstwhile Princely states cannot be sold, mortgaged or used by the royal families concerned, he said. “The BJP government is inducting royals into the BJP by luring them with the permission to sell those lands.
We will oppose any such decision,” the NCP leader said. Erstwhile Satara state was created by the British in 1818 after the Third Anglo-Maratha War and annexed by them in 1849 using the Doctrine of lapse. The state was ruled by descendants of Chhatrapati Shivaji. “The state of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj should remain intact…Raje (Bhosale) has gone there falling for such a permission.
We will fight it out if any such decision is taken,” he added. In an oblique reference to Bhosale’s mercurial temperament and perception that he is adept at using strong-arm tactics, Malik said people of Satara know how he operates. “In what state he is during the day and in the night. Pawar Saheb repeatedly gave him opportunity, still he has left,” Malik alleged. Bhosale’s decision is a jolt to the 20-year-old NCP whose many prominent leaders, including some former ministers, have quit the party to join the BJP and Shiv Sena ahead of next month’s state Assembly elections. The Maratha royal is a prized catch for the BJP which is making desperate attempts to make inroads into western Maharashtra, the citadel of the Congress and the NCP, ahead of polls. Satara Lok Sabha constituency comprises Wai, Koregaon, Karad North, Karad South, Patan and Satara assembly segments. Out of the six assembly constituencies, the NCP currently holds four segments while the Congress and the Shiv Sena one each.