Pune: Dhangekar Turns Trolls’ ‘8th Pass’ Barb into a Badge of Honor, Boasts of ‘PhD’ from Public Mandate

Pune: Dhangekar Turns Trolls' '8th Pass' Barb into a Badge of Honor, Boasts of 'PhD' from Public Mandate

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Pune: Ravindra Dhangekar, the Congress candidate for the Pune Lok Sabha seat, has turned the tables on social media trolls who mocked him as being only an “8th standard pass”. Responding to the resurfaced old affidavit highlighting his educational qualifications, Dhangekar embraced the taunts, claiming that the citizens of Kasba Peth had bestowed upon him a “PhD” through their votes in the recent assembly bypolls.

In the face of criticism from social media users aligned with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), who circulated images labeling him an “Uneducated MLA who is Std VIII Pass in Oxford of the East,” Dhangekar remained unfazed. Instead, he fired back at his detractors, asserting, “My ‘PhD’ has been conferred upon me by the public. The people of Pune have granted me this honor through their votes. Last year, a similar attempt was made to defame me by questioning, ‘Who is Dhangekar?’ It’s evident that my opponents are already sensing their defeat and are resorting to such baseless tactics to tarnish my reputation.”

Drawing parallels with esteemed figures like Karmaveer Bhaurao Patil and Vasant Dada Patil, who made significant contributions despite limited formal education, Dhangekar emphasized his deep understanding of the needs and desires of the electorate. “I have earned a ‘doctorate’ in understanding the pulse of the people. I comprehend their aspirations and concerns. Those who question my academic credentials should redirect their focus to the pressing issues affecting 83 percent of the state’s youth, such as unemployment, and propose solutions rather than engaging in petty attacks. The public has validated my capabilities, and it’s regrettable that my critics stoop to such levels to undermine me,” he asserted.

Dhangekar, who secured victory in the Kasba assembly seat on a Congress ticket, is now vying for the Lok Sabha seat against BJP’s Muralidhar Mohol, the former mayor of Pune.

In a separate development, MLA Rohit Pawar, affiliated with the NCP Sharad Pawar faction, accused the BJP’s IT cell of launching disparaging attacks on Dhangekar regarding his educational background.

“Even Prime Minister Narendra Modi himself admitted in an interview that his education was limited to high school… yet, he has served as PM for a decade. Despite Vasantdada Patil’s lack of formal education, his meetings would command the respect of IAS and IPS officers,” Rohit Pawar remarked, highlighting the significance of leadership qualities beyond academic qualifications.

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