NCP to contest 9 seats; Santokben's son Kandhal Jadeja fielded from Kutiyana

Kandhal Jadeja
NCP today announced the names of nine of its candidates including late 'Godmother' Santokben Jadeja's son Kandhal, for the Gujarat assembly polls, which is being fought by the party in alliance with the Congress.

There were some fissures between the two parties on the issue of seat sharing as NCP had demanded higher number of seats this time. The NCP wanted 18 but the Congress decided to give just nine seats this time.

In the 2007 elections, NCP fought on 10 seats in alliance with Congress and won three of them.

Kandhal Jadeja, a Porbandar gangster and son of Santokben has more than a dozen criminal cases pending against him. He will be contesting from Kutiyana seat against Karsan Odedera of the BJP.

He had recently challenged his externment order issued by the local administration from four districts of Saurashtra region, including Porbandar, in the Gujarat High Court saying that the state government was pressurising him to help BJP in the elections.

The HC has stayed the order till the elections.

NCP Gujarat chief Jayant Patel, a sitting MLA from Sarsa seat will contest the polls from Umreth assembly constituency.

Sitting MLA from Gondal, Chandu Vaghasiya, who was recently arrested in a water sector reforms project scam, will contest from the same seat.

Vaghasia had won the Gondal seat by a wafer-thin margin of 488 votes. Gujarat Parivartan Party (GPP) Secretary and former minister of state for Home in Modi's government Gordhan Zadaphia is also likely to fill his nomination papers from Gondal.

Pankaj Chauhan will contest from Devgadh Baria. Sitting NCP MLA of Devgadh, Baria Tusharsinh Maharaul had joined the BJP last month.

Chandubhai Thakkar will contest from Vaav constituency while Raghubhai Bharwad has been fielded from Shehra assembly constituency. Rajdeep Jamir Khan will be fighting the polls from Limbayat in Surat.

Navinbhai Patel will contest from Visnagar seat in Mehsana district while Nileshbhai Patel will contest from the Akota assembly constituency in Vadodara.

Some Congress leaders had opposed any seat-sharing agreement with the NCP for the Akota assembly seat stating that the Congress stood a better chance of winning the seat.

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