In a bid to retain their strongholds over their self-claimed ‘bastions,’ prominent leaders and ministers have started making a beeline to their respective party presidents to get tickets for their family members. This is the common practice among ticket seekers during elections.
However, due to the delimitation of the wards, some are reserved for women and few more for Scheduled Castes, which has given an impetus to dynasty politics. “Due to dynasty politics grass root party workers get affected,” said a Shiv Sena party worker who has lost out to Legislator Sada Sarvankar, who is pushing for his son, Samadhan Sarvankar.
The Member of Parliament (MP) from Bhartiya Janta Party (BJP) Kirit Somaya’s wife Medha Somaya and son Neil Somaya are contenders. Speaking about dynasty politics, Kirit Somaya said, I want to make Mumbai a mafia-free city and the responsibility is with me and to achieve it. My family and I will do our best.” He further added, “I want my wife to contest in these polls. The decision to field her in which ward will be taken by our party, President.” Sources from BJP said if there is no alliance with the Sena then she is likely to contest from Dadar (ward number 191), which is reserved for women.
Other prominent faces whose kin are likely to contest would be Sena Legislator (MLA) Ashok Dharmaraj Patil’s wife Meenakshi Patil (ward 116). The Sena MP Rahul Shewale’s wife Kamini Shewale would contest from Mankhurd constituency. MLA Mangesh Kudalkar is also trying his luck for his wife Rajani, from Kurla constituency.
There are several ministers of state whose sons are likely to make their debut. Harsh Mehta son of housing minister Prakash Mehta, Sagar Thakur son of Vidya Thakur (state women and child development minister), and Akash Purohit son of MLA Raj Purohit.
On the other hand, Swapna Deshpande, wife of Sandeep Deshpande the only known leader from Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) from Dadar Shivaji Park will carry on his legacy. While Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) opposition leader in the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) Dhananjay Pisal’s wife Bhartiya Pisal and former minister and NCP national Spokesperson Nawab Malik’s sister and sitting corporators Saida Khan and brother Abdul Malik (Kaptan Malik) would contest yet again.