BJP MLA Kalidas Kolambkar was selected by Maharashtra Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari as the Protem Speaker of the Assembly on Tuesday. He will administer the oath of the new MLAs in an Assembly session of the Maharashtra government.
An eight-time MLA from Wadala constituency, Kolambar joined BJP after quitting Congress just before Maharashtra’s Assembly elections in October. He defeated Congress candidate Shivkumar Lad by a margin of more than 30,000 votes.
In 2014, Kolambkar had contested the elections from the same constituency on a Congress ticket and got elected by a whisker — just 800 votes.
Although his consistency in representing Wadala for around 29 years worked in his favour in 2019 elections, BJP’s then ally Shiv Sena was not happy with his nomination from BJP ticket and questioned his loyalty.
One of the major reasons behind this discontent was the fact he, along with his colleague Narayan Rane, had ditched Sena to join Congress years ago. Since Kolambkar was poached by the BJP just before the elections, BJP workers were also treating him as an outsider.
Defending his decision to switch parties, Kolambkar had said, “I have joined BJP so that development works in this constituency can speed up. People chose me since I work for the betterment of my locality and their lives.”