With the reservation of wards for the Municipal Corporation polls to be finalised through draw of lots on Friday, political parties are keeping their fingers crossed.
State Election Commissioner Rakesh Mehta will be conducting the draw of lots at UT Guesthouse at 11 am. A meeting of the SEC with the political parties will also be held to discuss the future course of election process. It is only after Friday that the political parties will start finalising the list of candidates for the polls.
The reservation of seven wards (for Women and Scheduled Castes) will be held through the draw of lots. Five wards which are to be reserved for SC candidates will be on the basis of maximum SC population as per the latest census of 2011. Two wards for SC women, out of the five wards that are to be reserved for SCs, will also be decided through this draw of lots only. As per SC population, three of the five wards which are likely to be reserved are that of Congress heavyweights.
There are 26 wards in which the elections will be held. It will be decided on Friday which 14 wards will remain in the general category.
All the sitting councillors, especially heavyweights, who are in the race to contest the polls are getting the jitters. “When you have worked in one ward for years together and the ward gets reserved for a woman candidate, it becomes extremely difficult to contest from a new place. There people know you and it gets difficult to tell your achievements or develop contact at a place where people don’t know you,” said a councillor on condition of anonymity.
Davesh Moudgil, a BJP councillor, said, “Of course, the performance of a particular candidate matters a lot in his or her own ward. However, whichever place the party fields us from, we will be ready.”
The Congress had invited applications from candidates interested in contesting the MC elections. “After the picture becomes clear tomorrow, we will get the forms filled out for respective wards,” said a senior Congress leader. The Congress had received 200 applications.
The MC polls will be held in the third week of December and the results will be declared after two days. The code of conduct will come in force in the third week of November.
There will be 590 polling booths and about 1,000 EVMs are being obtained.