Women flood Cong with pleas for tickets in Gujarat

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The state Congress is flooded with applications from women party workers from all the districts, barring Dangs and Porbandar, seeking nomination for December Assembly elections.

As many as 160 women have sent their applications with their biodata, Gujarat Pradesh Mahila Congress president Sonal Patel said, adding she herself was not seeking a ticket.

The highest number of women aspirants are from Ahmedabad rural district (30), followed by Bhavnagar and Sabarkantha (14 each), Vadodara city and Surat rural district (10 each).

According to Patel, among those seeking nominations are 20 tribals, 30 dalits, 30 OBCs and five Muslim women.

Prominent among them are former minister Chandrikaben Chudasma, who lost by 2,631 votes, Bharati Patel, who lost by 2,267 votes, and Jyotiben Desai who lost by 13,220 votes in the 2007 Assembly polls.

Muslim women seeking tickets include Shehnaz Babi from Mangrol, Dr Mumtaz Serasiya from Wankaner, Naznin Bastawala from Jamalpur, Fatima Channiwala from Surat East and Jumna Isha from Bhuj. Babi lost by more than 30,987 votes in 2007 Assembly polls from Junagadh.

Stating that she had already submitted the list with the background of aspirants to the state and national party leadership, Patel said she had insisted for fielding at least 26 women in the upcoming Assembly polls.

"But it is for the party leadership to decide because winnability will be the most important factor since this is going to be a very crucial election," said Patel. In 2007, she said, the party had fielded seven candidates and only one of them, Chandrikaben Bariya, had won. Bariya was elected from Limkheda.

Asked why there were no women claimants for tickets from Porbandar and Dangs district, she said it was a matter of concern for all political, women and social leadership.

"We are currently holding booth-level training camps for women all over the state and I hope that in the next election, there will not be any district without a woman claimant," said Patel.

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