Congress on Friday appointed Balasaheb Thorat as the Leader of the Congress Legislature Party (CLP) in Maharashtra Assembly, replacing Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil, who has quit the Assembly and the party. Patil, who was Leader of the Opposition in the Assembly, resigned as a Member of Legislative Assembly (MLA) on June 4. Before that, he had stepped down from the post of Leader of Opposition in the Assembly in April.
In a letter to Malikarjun Kharge, AICC General Secretary in charge of Maharashtra, AICC General Secretary KC Venugopal stated that the party has approved a list of members to be appointed to the posts on the floor in the Maharashtra Legislative Assembly and Council. Besides Thorat, Vijay Namdeorao Wadettiwar as leader of the party in the Assembly, Mohd. Arif Naseem Khan as Deputy Leader and Baswaraj M. Patil Murumkar as Chief Whip.
The party has also appointed Agda Chandya Padvi, Sunil Chhatrapal Kedar, Jayakumar Bhagwanrao Gore, Yashomati Chandrakant Thakur and Praniti Sushilkumar Shine as Whips. In the Legislative Council, Sharad Ranpise has been appointed Leader while Ramhari G Rupnavar has been appointed Deputy Leader. Ashok Arjun Jagtap has been made the Whip in the Council. The appointments came in the wake of desertions from the Congress in the wake of the decimation of the party in the Lok Sabha elections. The defectors are apparently headed for BJP.
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