Cakewalk for Modi in Maninagar
Ahmedabad: As Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi bids for an unprecedented third term in office in Gujarat, the thought of his own electoral future seems to hardly cross his mind. And that's not without a reason. After all, Modi is locked in an unequal fight with a political novice, the wife of a suspended IPS officer who took on the BJP strongman over the most sore point in his career -- post-Godhra communal riots -- in Maninagar assembly constituency here.
Congress nominee Shweta Bhatt, the Kathak dancer spouse of Sanjeev Bhatt, once said to be close to Modi but fell out with him in the aftermath of the riots of 2002, is challenging Modi in his pocket borough. Sanjeev Bhatt is fighting a legal battle against the formidable Chief Minister and he has now brought it to the electoral arena by proxy.
Though there are 12 candidates in the fray, for all practical purposes, the contest is between Modi and Congress' Bhatt, after former Chief Minister Keshubhai Patel, a powerful leader of politically strong Patel community, decided to withdraw his nominee for the seat which is part of the rapidly expanding Ahmedabad city.
A Modi baiter, Keshubhai floated his own outfit Gujarat Parivartan Party, along with another former Chief Minister Suresh Mehta and ex-Union Minister Kashiram Rana a couple of months ago to undercut his successor who largely contributed to his marginalisation in state politics. Rana has since died, giving a jolt to the fledgling party.
Even Muslims in the constituency with an electorate of 2.25 lakh readily concede it is "a no contest" between Modi, a hardboiled politician, and Shweta Bhatt. "In Maninagar, it is going to be a cake-walk for Modi. Nobody can defeat him," says Mohammed Mohsin Ansari, a tailor.
The Delhi Police is likely to conduct more raids in connection with the IPL spot-fixing scandal. Teams of the Delhi Police's special cell have been sent to Mumbai, Ahmedabad, Hyderabad, and Kolkata to conduct searches and track the money trail in the IPL spot-fixing case.
Date 17-05-13, Duration 1:21, Views 785