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Narendra Modi effect: Shiv Sena, BJP assembly tickets in hot demand

Friday, 30 May 2014 - 6:00am IST | Agency: dna

Following the Modi wave during the Lok Sabha polls, there's a massive demand for the tickets of the Shiv Sena and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for the upcoming assembly elections in October.

The saffron alliance had won 43 out of the 48 Lok Sabha seats in Maharashtra and all six seats in Mumbai.

In Mumbai, Sena and BJP workers have started sending their CVs to their respective local leaders for endorsement.

Said Sena MP Anil Desai: "There's tremendous demand. Even people from outside our party are approaching us for tickets. But the ultimate decision will be taken by our leader Uddhav Thackeray."

"He has already done the background checks of potential candidates, their winning chances, constituency profiles, local issues and assessment of rival parties. All data have been fed into his computer," a Sena source told dna on Thursday.

The Shiv Sena and the BJP led in 231 of the 288 assembly segments (Shiv Sena 89 and BJP 131) in the recently held Lok Sabha elections.
The Congress-NCP ended up a poor number two with 43 (Congress 17 and NCP 26).

Mumbai has 36 assembly seats, of which four are currently with the Sena and five with the BJP.

There's a rush for tickets at the BJP offices, too. Atul Bhatkhalkar, a senior BJP leader said: "There's a huge demand for my party's tickets not only from within the organisation, but also from outside. We have started preparations for the polls. As regards seat adjustments with the Sena, it's too early to say anything."

Bhatkhalkar may contest from Kandivli (East) against Ramesh Singh, sitting Congress MLA. BJP corporator Amit Satam is likely to be fielded against Ashok Jadhav, sitting Congress MLA in Andheri (West).
The ticklish issue will be seat adjustments. The BJP believes the Sena benefited enormously in the LS polls from the Modi wave and hence the latter should concede more seats.

Sena leaders, however, say that from day one of the alliance formation, the understanding has been that the BJP will contest more LS seats and the Sena more assembly seats. "This understanding cannot be broken now. The BJP has to settle for lesser seats," a senior Sena leader said.

Meanwhile, there is hardly any demand for Congress tickets in the city. The party rank and file is totally demoralised after its rout. There is a demand that Janardhan Chandurkar be replaced with a dynamic leader as president of the city unit.

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