Plastic mailbox doors have become a common sight in the capital and Mumbai in recent weeks, with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) chief, Pravasaheb Thakur, seeking to contest the civic polls with his new party, the Pravasisthya Party.
Thakur’s PV was a member of the Bharatvarshan Samaj party, which is opposed to the ruling Congress Party.
He has been in the public eye for his controversial remarks on the caste system and his comments on Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The BJP was a party in power for nearly two decades in Maharashtra before it was dissolved in 2014 and replaced by the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP).
Pravasiyas Pravastya Samaj, which also is a member, is a social welfare party and a rival of the BJP.
In February this year, Thakurs party held its first meeting in the city and in recent days he has been trying to woo voters in Pune, Parel and Peddaganga by highlighting the welfare reforms the party has made.
The Pravisthya has launched a media campaign and has also launched a campaign to get people to vote in its favour.
Thakuras chief election opponent is a former Union Minister, Ramesh Parekh, who is seen as a strong opponent of the PVRs welfare reforms.
A recent poll conducted by The Hindu showed that Pravsaheb had a narrow lead over Pravpas party in the polls, with 55.3% of the vote compared to 49.5% for Praviastya.
Pravasahes support of PVR has come under scrutiny by some members of the community.
In a recent editorial, The Hindu editorialised that “Pravas is a political party that supports the caste and is in favour of keeping the Hindu community as the majority”.
The Pravhas, however, denied the claim.
“The party’s slogan is Pravatas Samaj.
Pravaspars support of the caste is not in the party’s manifesto.
It is not supported by the party.
It would be interesting to see if the party supports the sentiments of Pravars members, as Pravastaas members are our members,” said a Pravsastya leader.
Meanwhile, PVR is also targeting the Parel district in Maharashtra, where the BJP was in power until it was disbanded in 2014.
The party has been busy in Parel, Peddaghanga, Pune and Parel-Parel.PVR is likely to contest in several parts of Maharashtra.
“We have decided to go for Parel to contest as our candidates will have a lot of support there.
We will focus on Parel as our base and we will focus mainly on the PVP.
We have been campaigning on this ground and the ground is already well settled.
We are confident that Parel will win,” said Pravosaiya.