Reprieve for Ahmed Patel,tough battle for Congress as new face Sherkhan gets ticket

By Abdul hafiz lakhani Ahmedabad

The Congress on Thursday announced the names of two candidates for Lok Sabha polls in Gujarat, taking the total number of seats on which it has declared its candidates to 357. . The party has fielded Sher Khan Abdul Shakur Pathan from Bharuch Lok Sabha constituency in Gujarat, putting to rest all speculation about senior leader Ahmed Patel being a possible candidate. Organisational responsibilities may have prevented Mr. Patel as he is also the party’s treasurer who is tasked with the responsibility of mobilising funds for the party ahead of elections.

The party on Thursday also announced that Kantilal Muljibhai Patel as its candidate for the by-election to the Unjha assembly seat in Gujarat.

Patel, currently a Rajya Sabha member, won from Bharuch thrice, in 1977, 1980 and 1984, but lost to BJP’s Chandubhai Deshmukh in 1991, after which he did not contest from the seat. The Bharuch Lok Sabha seat is one of the 26 parliamentary constituencies in Gujarat, which will vote on April 23, the third of the seven-phased general elections. Bharuch has been a stronghold of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party for two decades.
The BJP has retained Bharuch Lok Sabha seat over the last nine parliamentary elections beginning 1989, when it snatched this constituency from the Congress.

Senior Congress party leader Ahmed Patel was elected from Bharuch in the Lok Sabha three consecutive times in 1977, 1980 and 1984 elections. Mansukhbhai Vasava of the BJP is the four-time sitting MP from Bharuch, which is an industrial district of Gujarat. Bharuch Lok Sabha constituency comprises of seven Gujarat assembly segments, two of which are reserved for the members of Scheduled Tribe community. In this scenario, Threre will be a triangular fight in Bharuch.

This puts Chhotu Vasava and the Bhartiya Tribal Party in a decisive position as his candidature will, more or less, decide the result of Bharuch Lok Sabha. The BJP leadership perhaps is very happy now as the BTP to fight independently because it can only divided Congress’ votes.
The assembly segments under the Bharuch Lok Sabha constituencies are, Bharuch, Karjan, Dediapada (ST), Jambusar, Vagra, Jhagadia (ST) and Ankleshwar.

Bharuch Lok Sabha Constituency: Key Facts

Total number of voters in 2014: 1,061,060

Votes polled in 2014 elections: 82 per cent

Sitting MP, Party: Mansukhbhai Dhanjibhai Vasava

Votes polled by winning candidate in 2014: 5,48,902

Percentage of votes polled by winning candidate: 52 per cent

Winning margin in 2014: 1,53,273

Runner up name, party (2014): Jayeshbhai Ambalalbhai Patel (Jayesh Kaka), Indian National Congress

Votes polled by runner-up in 2014: 395,629

Number of polling booths in 2014: 1,725

Number of women voters: 4,95,543

This year mid-March, Gujarat government clamped the Disturbed Areas Act in several areas in Bharuch prohibiting Muslims from selling, leasing or transferring their property to a Hindu and vice versa. voters will also consider this issue in this election ,it is learnt

The Bharuch Lok Sabha seat has the highest concentration of Muslim voters in Gujarat. Currently, of the 15.64 lakh voters in Bharuch, 22.2% are Muslims.