Shiv Sena (UBT) Rajya Sabha MP Sanjay Raut on Wednesday said former chief ministers Sharad Pawar and Uddhav Thackeray are the main leaders in Maharashtra and the state politics will revolve around them.

He said the NCP faction led by party founder Sharad Pawar will trump the rebel group headed by deputy CM Ajit Pawar in the 2024 elections.

“It doesn`t matter that Sharad Pawar and (his nephew) Ajit Pawar are seen together (after split in the party in July). In 2024, the Sharad Pawar faction will make Ajit Pawar bite the dust. The state politics will revolve around only Sharad Pawar and Uddhav Thackeray,” Raut told reporters.

He claimed the Congress will win all the five states where assembly elections are being held in November (voting has been completed in Mizoram) and added this will set the tone for the 2024 Lok Sabha polls.

Asked about Prime Minister Narendra Modi calling Congress MP Rahul Gandhi “murkhon ka sardar” (leader of fools) at a poll rally in Madhya Pradesh on Tuesday, Raut said this shows the BJP`s fear for the Lok Sabha member from Kerala.

“Those who call Rahul Gandhi `murkhon ka sardar` have realised which way the political winds are blowing. If Rahul Gandhi is `murkhon ka sardar`, why do you even talk about him . If you are criticising him day in and out, it shows the BJP`s fear for Rahul,” the Shiv Sena (UBT) leader remarked.

Raut said Shiv Sena (UBT) president Uddhav Thackeray will embark on a state-wide tour after Diwali and an organizational overhaul was on the cards.

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