Ashish Shelar (Photo: BCCL)
Shelar, who started his political career during his student days in 1988 with ABVP, was seen as a potential state-level leader. A law graduate and two-term corporator, he became an MLC in 2012 before contesting the assembly polls in 2014.
Meanwhile, he got opportunities to prove himself as a election strategist in the 2017 civic polls. During his term, BJP’s tally in the BMC reached up to 83 when Sena-BJP contested separately. He has also been actively focussing on the city’s civic infrastructure and other issues.
He is said to share a good rapport with Amit Shah as the BJP national president has visited him at his residence several times during his Mumbai visits.
Shelar is involved the sports sector, taking a cue from NCP chief Sharad Pawar. The former chairman of Mumbai Cricket Association also held the post of chairman of BCCI marketing committee. He worked with the Mumbai football association and Rope Skipping Association and has been vice chairman of the Rajasthan Sports Club.
In BJP circles, the CM’s decision to give school education department to Shelar is being viewed as a setback for Tawde. In the other decisions during the reshuffle, Sambhaji Patil Nilangekar has been given food & civil supplies, consumer protection, skill development, ex-servicemen welfare, while Jaykumar Rawal will head food & drugs administration, tourism, protocol and Subhash Deshmukh will head cooperation, relief and rehabilitation departments.’