With screening of applications vying to be BJP’s candidate in the upcoming urban local body polls scheduled to begin Thursday, the party has seen a surge in mayoral aspirants to 16 corporations.
The application process ended on Tuesday evening and the list of probable candidates will be the sent to the state party headquarters once screening is completed.
Aligarh, with 78 applicants, is highest on the application-count. The seat is unreserved unlike in 2012 when it had to go to a woman from the OBC category. That time, the party had received just five candidates.
In Agra, party received 59 applications for the unreserved seat. Only eight candidates had applied in 2012 when the seat was reserved for Scheduled Caste (SC). For the ticket of corporators in 100 municipal wards in Agra, BJP has so far received 1,087 applications.
In the newly-formed Ayodhya Nagar Nigam, party has received 53 applications, including two women, for the mayoral post. Also for 60 corporators, there are more than 600 applicants.
“There is enthusiasm because this is the first time… Acceptance of BJP has increased and the government is also paying attention to development,” said Awdhesh Pandey, BJP district chief.
Similarly in the newly-created Mathura-Vrindavan Nagar Nigam, BJP received 36 applications for a mayoral ticket reserved for Scheduled Caste (SC). At least 650 leaders have applied for corporators’ ticket in 70 wards.
In Allahabad, which has never had a BJP mayor, the party has received 51 applications. Also, party received more than 1,500 applicants for corporators in 80 wards. In 2012, when the seat was reserved for a woman, BSP-supported Independent candidate Abhilasha Gupta defeated BJP’s Kamla Singh. This January, Abhilasha joined BJP. Both have now applied for mayor ticket.
Party has received 37 applications for mayoral ticket in Bareilly.
In PM Narendra Modi’s Lok Sabha constituency of Varanasi, BJP received only 13 applicants for mayor that is reserved for OBC-woman. “As it is PM’s constituency, party is looking for strong candidate who could retain mayor seat. Loss of the mayor seat in elections could send adverse message. Some senior OBC leaders have proposed name of their wives for BJP ticket,” said a BJP leader in Varanasi.
In Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath’s home district Gorakhpur where party has received 26 applications for the OBC reserved mayoral seat. The seat was reserved for woman in 2012 when BJP had won the seat. “BJP had won mayor seat here in 2012 in adverse conditions. We are sure of win this time too because the conditions are favourable for BJP and it is home district of CM,” said a BJP leader in Gorakhpur.
In Ghaziabad where mayor seat in reserved for woman, BJP has received 36 applications for the mayor’s seat. Also, 1,350 applications have been received for 100 seats of corporators. BJP had won this mayor seat in 2012.
Party has received 25 applications for mayor ticket and 300 applications for 70 seats of corporators in Moradabad.
In another BJP stronghold Meerut, party has received 22 applications for mayor seat that is reserved for SC-woman. “Dalit women from women wing of the party have got an opportunity to contest the election,” said a BJP leader. BJP has been winning that mayor seat of Meerut for three consecutive terms.
In Saharanpur, where election for mayor seat will be held first time, 25 leaders have applied for mayor seat that is reserved for OBC. Likewise in Firozabad too where mayor election will be held first time, 28 candidates have turn up for BJP ticket of mayor. Mayor seat of Firozabad is reserved for OBC-woman.
In Jhansi, 38 BJP leaders have applied for mayor ticket. The seat is unreserved for upcoming polls whereas the seat was reserved for SC-woman in 2012 and then then BJP had won.
In Kanpur, where the mayor seat has been reserved for woman, BJP has received 34 applications for mayor ticket. Industrial city Kanpur is known as a stronghold of BJP that had won mayor seat there in 2012 too.
For the post of Lucknow mayor, party has received more than 24 applications, according to state general secretary and Lucknow election in-charge Ashok Kataria. The seat is reserved for a woman and sources said that leaders from Mahila Morcha along with a leader close to RSS and a woman priest of a prominent city temple is in race for the ticket. Sources said, these leaders have approached local MP and union Home Minister Rajnath Singh to get mayor ticket.