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Mumbai, April 11, 2009
The nomination papers of senior Shiv Sena leader Gajanan Kirtikar, who reportedly committed errors while filing his nomination from Mumbai North-West constituency, have been accepted by the returning officer. An official from the State Election Commission (SEC) told IANS that after scrutiny of Kirtikar's application, it was decided that it would be accepted.

The matter was under consideration by the returning officer, Mumbai Suburban District additional collector Ashwini Joshi, and her team of officials since Saturday morning.

Earlier, the SEC had found Kirtikar had committed at least five serious blunders, including forgetting to sign the form.

Shortly after the SEC announcement, a calm Kirtikar told reporters, "It was nothing serious, the Congress was scared of my candidature."

Kirtikar's rival candidates from the Congress and the Samajwadi Party (SP) had demanded his papers be rejected.

"We have taken strong objection to this. Incomplete or erroneous forms are rejected in municipal elections; here we are talking of the country's parliament," said Congress' Gurudas Kamat, who is contesting from the same constituency.

SP state chief and candidate from the same constituency Abu Asim Azmi had expressed the hope that the returning officer would reject the nomination and not "succumb to pressures".

Another prominent candidate from the constituency is Maharashtra Navnirman Sena's Shalini Thackeray, the first-ever daughter-in-law of the Thackeray family to step into electoral politics.