Former Member of Parliament Anna Joshi has left the Bharatiya Janata Party to join the Nationalist Congress Party and will fight the Maharashtra state assembly elections from Pune.
Joshi is one of the seniormost BJP leaders from Pune and was a two-time MLA before he became MP. He will file his nomination as an NCP candidate from Kothrud constituency where the Shiv Sena-BJP alliance has fielded Chandrakant Mokate (of the SS), according to NCP spokesman Ankush Kakde.
Cracks in the BJP city unit have surfaced with Joshi's crossover.
According to BJP sources, Joshi was a disillusioned man after he was denied a ticket in the last Lok Sabha elections and again for the ensuing assembly elections from Pune.
Joshi had also held the post of deputy speaker of Maharashtra assembly in the past.
Another surprise candidature for the eight assembly seats from Pune has been of Rohit Tilak, direct descendant of Lokmanya Tilak, whom the Congress has fielded from Kasaba Peth constituency.
Rohit is the grandson of late speaker of the state assembly Jayantrao Tilak and will be locked in a fight against sitting BJP MLA Girish Bapat.