After its crushing defeat in the Lok Sabha polls earlier this year, the flagging Sena is desperate to win this seat, long associated with the birth and growth of the party Bal Thackeray founded 43 years ago.
If Bandekar now gets the Assembly ticket, sitting legislator Dagdu Sakpal will be asked to contest from his hometown of Wai in Satara district.
Sakpal has ruled the Parel constituency with an iron hand ever since 1992. But, in recent times, he has lost support within the party and fallen out with the local Sena corporator.
Still defiant, Sakpal said talk of Bandekar getting the ticket was a “figment of imagination”. “I have full faith that my party will field me from Sewri,” he said.
Meanwhile, there was much drama as Bandekar announced his decision to quit his show on Wednesday. After appeals from his fans, he recanted, saying the decision has been in response to the election code of conduct, but he would now wait for directions from the Election Commission.