While the Election Commission of India, with the help of the district administration, was striving hard to make its daylong special drive for registering voters a success yesterday, none of the already declared or proposed Lok Sabha candidates displayed much interest in supporting the cause.
AAP’s LS candidate in the city Subhash Ware was so engrossed in his election campaigning that while addressing the party workers at PMC’s Sant Goroba Bal Vidya Niketan School in Vimannagar area, he failed to realise that the voter registration drive was in progress within the premises.
MNS’s Deepak Paigude, whose candidature for LS was declared by party chief Raj Thackeray last morning, was in Mumbai and, afterwards, he was busy celebrating the news.
When mid-day contacted Ware in the evening, he admitted that he couldn’t pay attention towards the voters’ registration drive owing to his campaign-related engagements.
“Yes, unfortunately, today I have not gone to any of the centres. But, for the past one year, AAP members have tried hard to register new voters across the city, by arranging special drives in IT firms and housing societies,” he said.
On the other hand, Ajay Shinde, city vice-president of MNS, said, “Along with Paigude all party workers and office bearers are in Mumbai. So, literally, no one was in the city to oversee the drive.”
Despite repeated attempts Paigude remained unavailable for comment.
Meanwhile, both Congress and BJP are yet to come up with the final names of their candidates for Pune.
According to sources, from Congress the proposed names are of Maharashtra Pradesh Youth Congress president Dr Vishwajeet Kadam, MLA Vinayak Nimhan and Meera Kalmadi, wife of MP Suresh Kalmadi.
When contacted, Kadam said, “For the whole day, I was busy in a family function. But my party workers are involved in the registration drive.”
Similarly, though BJP has not declared its candidate for the city, names of MLA Girish Bapat and city president Anil Shirole are among probables.
“In the morning, I went over and had a look at the special drive. My party workers in the city are also trying hard to increase voter registration in the city,” Shirole said.
Bapat could not be contacted in spite of several attempts.