Suresh Kalmadi may have been denied party ticket for his alleged role in the Commonwealth scam, but for Congress candidate Vishwajeet Kadam, the outgoing MP is a veteran leader and a pillar of strength. Speaking to media persons after a function organised by the city Congress unit to felicitate him, Kadam said he didn't want to delve much over Kalmadi since the case against him was still going on.
Kadam put up a brave face despite absence of other aspirants like Vinayak Nimhan, Mohan Joshi and MLA Ramesh Bagve not being present at the function and insisted all factions were going to work for him in the ensuing elections. "I had a breakfast meeting with Nimhan in the morning. He couldn't come here because of some family issues while Bagwe and Joshi have gone to Mumbai for a meeting," Kadam said. After his candidature was announced on Tuesday night, Kadam was felicitated on Wednesday by Pune city district congress committee at Congress Bhavan. City unit president Abhay Chhajed welcomed Kadam at the Congress Bhavan.
Deputy mayor Bandu Gaikwad, MLC Sharad Ranpise along with Chhajed felicitated Kadam. When asked if the alliance partner NCP leader will also campaign for him, Kadam said, "Their party president and veteran leader and NCP President Sharad Pawar ahs already asked all his party workers to work for every seat where Congress and NCP are contesting together. Deputy chief Minister Ajit Pawar would also campaign through out the state for the same."
In his maiden address as candidate at historic Congress Bhavan,Vishwajeet Kadam impressed one and all. Appealing party workers to work unitedly to defeat fascist communal BJP and its allies, Kadam said that people who love Congress and party workers who have kept Pune as bastion of the party would retain the Pune seat for Congress. Kadam said, "I come from the land of Late Yashwantrao Chavan and I grew up drinking water from Lokmanya Tilak's city." Referring to campaign against him that he is an outsider for Pune as Goebbels policy, Kadam said, "I was born in Pune, studied in Pune and my family is staying in Pune for last 49 years. Even though I worked in Western Maharashtra for some time, I was active in 2007 and 2012 PMC elections and also campaigned in 2009 assembly and Lok Sabha elections. I am connected with youth and various sections of Pune through my work as President of Maharashtra Pradesh Yuvak Congress. "