For a majority of candidates, Tuesday was the busiest day since they filed their nomination papers. Appointing volunteers for polling booths, meeting party workers and private interactions with their “key” voters kept candidates on their toes all Tuesday. However, some chose time to spend with their families, visit a spa or listen to music to beat the stress.
Anushakti Nagar’s sitting NCP MLA Nawab Malik spent his entire day with his grandson. “It has been a hectic campaign.
I want to utilise the day by just spending time with my family,” said Malik, who had also posted pictures of his grandson Azaan holding the NCP flag on Facebook a few days ago.
For Shahid Rafi, who is contesting on All India Majlis-E-Ittehadul Muslim (AIMIM) ticket from Mumbadevi, unwinding meant listening to his father Mohammad Rafi’s songs. “Though there is no time to relax, I listen to my father’s songs and hum a few tunes to beat the stress. That and namaaz always refresh me,” he said.
Several candidates were exhausted and had hoarse voices after two weeks of extensive campaigning. One of them, sitting Congress MLA from Bandra West, Baba Siddique, was off to a spa on Tuesday to “rejuvenate”. Siddique spent the morning meeting party workers and polling agents along with his son, who had come down from London to help with his father’s campaign. “I need to get rid of the poll anxiety,” Siddique said, between coughs.
“There is no time to rest” for corporator and BJP’s Bandra East candidate Krushna Parkar, with the standing committee meeting scheduled on October 16. Besides spending the day with his key voters, NGOs and senior citizens in their homes, Parkar was seen making arrangements to organise a ‘Swachata Abhiyan’ at Golibhar on October 17 and 18. “I’m still a corporator and our work never ends,” said Parkar.
Former journalist and first-time candidate Avinash Barve of AIMIM spent Tuesday recounting his journey of the past few days, poring over the past week’s newspapers and television footage that featured him. “I’ve come so far. These (newspaper cutouts) mean our work and effort was recognized at some level.”
However, for some candidates, the day mostly meant scurrying to make last-ditch efforts to organise party workers and polling agents for a smooth show on the voting day. Sena candidate Sadanand Sarvankar met key voters of his constituency while sitting MNS MLA Nitin Sardesai said administrative work before the polling day kept him busy.
“I will unwind on October 16. Till then, I will personally monitor that every booth is covered by party volunteers,” said Susieben Shah, Congress candidate from Malabar Hill.
Congress’s Byculla candidate Madhu Chavan spent the day in his office while his volunteers met residents in Byculla to make sure every one came out to vote.
Dharavi’s BJP candidate Divya Dhole, a first-timer, herself went around distributing area-wise voter lists to the polling agents, leaving nothing to chance.