Builders, businessmen, bankers, solicitor and educationists will represent Raj Thackeray’s Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) in the fledgling party’s first ever state election.
A preliminary list of candidates has been finalised by the party chief and is likely to be released next week, party sources said.
In Malabar Hill, the party is fielding 28-year-old Archit Jayakar, a solicitor and son of veteran Marathi actor Smita Jayakar.
“I have come to the people with a clean slate and am joining politics just as social work,” said Jayakar, adding that he had been active in the area for some time, working with the MNS’s legal aid wing, and was confident of winning.
Patkar college principal Uday Mashelkar (59) will stand from Goregaon, contesting against Shiv Sena leader Subhash Desai.
“There are many poor students who cannot afford to study and my initial aim is to make my constituency 100 per cent literate,” said Mashelkar.
Pramod Patil, also an educationist, is likely to be offered the Wadala ticket. Patil runs a number of educational institutions in Sangli and plans to open a DEd college there too. He is also on the boards of various cooperative banks in Mumbai.
Two developers will also be in the fray — Nitin Sardesai (Dadar-Mahim) of Matoshree Developers and Mangesh Sangle (Vikhroli) of Kula-Laxmi Realtors.
Other likely MNS candidates include scrap businessman Arvind Gawde (Colaba), exporter Ram Kadam (Ghatkopar), wholesale dealer Sanjay Naik (Byculla), hotelier Satyavan Dalvi (Mulund) and entrepreneur Nandu Satam (Worli).
Next, a memorial for Ambedkar?
It’s raining mid-ocean memorials this election season, with politicians vying to outdo each other in ‘honouring’ historical figures. Despite the uproar over the proposed memorial for Shivaji, the Third Front — a conglomeration of 17 parties — on Tuesday promised a mid-sea memorial to Dalit leader Babasaheb Ambedkar if they win the election. “It will be similar to the statue of Liberty, off the Dadar coast,” said Republican Party of India leader Ramdas Athavale, while releasing the Third Front’s manifesto.