Shiv Sena MP Dhairyasheel Mane calls upon Raju Shetti

first_imgA rare moment of political grace was witnessed on Wednesday when Dhairyasheel Mane, newly-elected Shiv Sena MP from Hatkanangale, called upon Raju Shetti, the Swabhimani Paksha chief, and sought the blessings of Mr. Shetti’s kin.Mr. Shetti welcomed the 38-year-old Mr. Mane to his office in Kolhapur where they embraced each other. Mr. Mane later went to Mr. Shetti’s home and sought the blessings of his 86-year-old mother, Ratnabai and his wife, Sangeeta Shetti.“I regard him [Mr. Mane] as my grandson and hope he will work for the welfare of his constituency [Hatkanangale] like my son has been doing for so many years,” said the octogenarian Ms. Shetti.On his part, an emotionally overwhelmed Mr. Mane said he had made this visit specially to seek the blessing of Mr. Shetti’s mother, who he referred to as aaji (grandmother).“Raju Shetti is my elder and a tall farmers’ leader in this region. But most of all, I wanted to seek the blessings of Mr. Shetti’s mother, who is akin to my grandmother, to begin my work as a newly-elected MP on a positive note,” said Mr. Mane.Mr. Shetti said he was happy and pleased that Mr. Mane had visited him.“Whether we like it or not, the onset of any election comes with its baggage of personal animosity and antagonism. However, once the fight is over, it is not right for this acrimony to persist,” Mr. Shetti said. A two-time MP from Hatkanangale in Kolhapur, Mr. Shetti, lost to Mr. Mane by a margin of 96,000 votes in what turned out to be one of the biggest upsets in the State, and certainly the biggest in the ‘sugar heartland’ of western Maharashtra.Incidentally, Mr. Shetti had defeated Mr. Mane’s mother — former NCP MP Nivedita Mane — in the 2009 general elections to win Hatkanangale by a margin of more than 95,000 votes. At that time, Mr. Shetti’s avowed mission was to put all NCP-Congress sugar satraps “behind bars”.In 2014, he allied his party to the BJP’s fortunes and won by a margin of 1.77 lakh votes.However, Mr. Shetti parted ways with the BJP in 2017, pulling out of the NDA and becoming a vociferous critic of the policies and functioning of the Narendra Modi and Devendra Fadnavis governments at the Centre and the State.Since Sharad Pawar announced his backing for Mr. Shetti in November last year, the latter’s alliance with the Congress-NCP upset sections within the two parties in the Kolhapur-Sangli belt, especially leaders like Ms. Mane who quit the NCP to join the Sena.last_img