The race to capture the maximum number of seats in the upcoming Mumbai civic polls is getting saucier, with the Shiv Sena and the BJP scurrying to poach on sitting corporators and getting strong local leaders on board. Three sitting corporators have joined the Sena bastion in the last three days while the BJP on Tuesday inducted an independent corporator from Colaba in south Mumbai, Makrand Narvekar, and NCP leader Asif Bhamla into its fold.
So far, the Sena has poached on 14 sitting corporators while the BJP has got nine.
Ironically, even as MNS had approached Sena for alliance, figures show that the latter has not much to offer. Of the 28 elected corporators after the 2012 election, eight have already joined the Sena or BJP while most of the remaining one are affected by delimitation and reservations.
Two MNS corporators, Chetan Kadam and Deepak Pawar, Congress corporator and former opposition leader, Devendra Amberkar, shifted their loyalties towards the Sena. On Tuesday, Kadam joined the Sena and Narvekar joined the BJP.
Kadam said he was unhappy with the attitude of senior MNS leaders who were not confident of doing well in the elections.
Meanwhile, Congress corporator Parminder Singh Bhamra, who had joined BJP, returned to his party within a few days.
The change in teams
Congress corporators, Yogesh Bhoir from Kandivli (east) and Bhomsingh Rathod from Malad (east) joined Shiv Sena
Sandhya Doshi, Savita Pawar and Riddhi Khursange from NCP joined Sena
Ishwar Tayade, Suresh Avale, Geeta Chavan from MNS joined Sena last year.
Prakash Darekar, Sukhada Pawar and Bhalchandra Ambure from MNS joined BJP
Kesarben Mehta and Sagar Thakur from Congress have joined BJP.
Jyoti, wife of BJP MLA Parag Alavani joined BJP. She had contested 2012 elections as an independent. Leena Shukla an independent corporator also joined BJP.
Waqarunnisa Ansari from Congress also recently shifted loyalties towards AIMIM.
Senior party leader Vivekanand Gupta was on Tuesday appointed secretary of Mumbai unit of the BJP. The appointment was made by city BJP president Ashish Shelar.