The election drama officially kicked off on Tuesday with three sitting Congress MPs – Priya Dutt, Sanjay Nirupam and Gurdas Kamat – among 11 candidates filing their nominations at Mumbai suburban collector's office.
All the six constituencies in Mumbai are among the 19 constituencies in Maharashtra, which will go to polls on April 24. The notification for the third phase of polling was issued on March 29.
Kamat is seeking re-election from Mumbai North-West, Priya Dutt from Mumbai North-Central and Nirupam from Mumbai North.
BJP candidate from Mumbai North Gopal Shetty and actress Rakhi Sawant of Rashtriya Aam Party, actor-filmmaker Kamaal Khan of Samajwadi Party, contesting from Mumbai North-West, also filed their papers.
Ashok Singh of BSP, Satyavijay Chavan (independent) filed their nomination for Mumbai North. Rakesh Arora, Mohamed Rafiq Hussain Sheikh and Mohammed Mahima Siddique, all contesting as independents, also filed nominations for the Mumbai North-Central seat.
Priya Dutt visited the Siddhivinayak temple and sought the blessings of Lord Ganesha this afternoon. She also sought blessings at Chaitya Bhoomi, Maqdoom Shah Baba Dargah, Dhan Pothdar Gurudwara and Mount Mary Church.
Dutt then undertook a padyatra from Bandra (West) to the collector office with her MLAs Krishna Hegde, Baba Siddique and over 5,000 Congress activists.
Mumbai Congress president Janardhan Chandurkar, MLAs Baba Siddique (Bandra), Krishna Hegde (Vile Parle) and Milind Kamble (Kurla) of the NCP signed as proposers on her nomination form.
When asked about the absence of Mumbai Suburban Guardian Minister and Chandivali MLA Mohammed Arif Naseem Khan and Kalina MLA Kripashankar Singh, which fuelled speculation about the rampant infighting in the city unit, Hegde said Khan was a cabinet minister and on election duty, while Kripashankar was in Jaunpur overseeing election preparedness of actor Ravi Kishen. Kamat was accompanied by MLAs Baldev Khosa, Suresh Shetty and Ashok Jadhav.