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Incumbent panel to retain power in Krishna sugar mill

KOLHAPUR: Despite a three-way contest, the incumbent panel, led by chairman Suresh Bhosale, is likely to retain power in the Karad-based Yashwantrao Mohite Krishna Cooperative sugar factory. The “Krishna” factory is the largest cooperative sugar mill in the region and has a presence in five tehsils of Satara and Sangli districts. It has over 47,000 farmers as voters.
Political heavyweights from both the districts had distanced themselves from the election. Former chief minister Prithviraj Chavan and current Cabinet ministers Jayant Patil and Balasaheb Patil had stayed away from participating in the election process primarily because their own supporters were divided over which panel to support.
Chavan, in the early stage of the poll, had tried to bring the two opposition panels — one led by Avinash Mohite and another by Indrajit Mohite — together. However, they could not agree on seat sharing and,therefore, decided to contest as separate panels. Minister of state Vishwajeet Kadam had openly campaigned for the Rayat panel led by Indrajit Mohite. His efforts, were futile.
Around 91% of the voters had cast their votes. In previous five-yearly election, the turnout was 79%. The increased turnout was due to fierce campaigning. The panel led by Bhosale comfortably won. By Thursday evening, the panel was comfortably ahead on all of the 21 seats. Sitting chairman Suresh Bhosale was leading by over 10,000 votes.
Shantaram Patil, a political observer from Islampur in Sangli district, said, “The distancing of the senior political functionaries is one of the reasons for the incumbent panel to retain power. Otherwise, the voters usually turn the tide against the incumbent panel every five years. This has been happening for the past couple of decades. The other reason for Bhosale’s panel retaining power is the help extended to the farmers during Covid, mainly by providing the highest price for sugar cane.”

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