Congress sitting MP Sanjay Nirupam is facing a tough contest from BJP's Gopal Shetty in the North Mumbai Lok Sabha constituency, which goes to polls on April 24.
Nirupam, who won the 2009 poll by just over 5,000 votes, is locked in an electoral battle with Shetty, IIM graduate Satish Jain (AAP) and Kamlesh Yadav (SP) in the third phase of the Lok Sabha elections in Maharashtra.
Nirupam is confident of retaining his seat, saying he has maintained contact with grassroot party workers and voters in the last five years.
"I have managed to get a DDR (District Deputy Registrar) office and an RTO office in Malad. Due to my efforts the second Metro route was extended from Charkop to Dahisar," he claimed.
"I have worked for the development of my constituency through issues like deemed conveyance to model stations and hospital. I plan to complete pending projects like the sports complex, medical college and auditorium if I win the election," he said.
Altogether 21 candidates are in the fray in North Mumbai, which is dominated by Gujaratis and north Indians. It comprises Dahisar, Borivali, Kandivali (East), Charkop and Malad (West) in suburban Mumbai.
In 2009, Nirupam benefited from the anti-Congress votes split between the BJP and MNS. While Nirupam polled 2,55,157, the BJP candidate Ram Naik, a former Union minister, polled 2,49,378 and MNS candidate Shirish Parkar got 1,47,502 votes.
AAP nominee Jain speaks of applying "text book management principles" for development of his constituency. A post-graduate from the Indian Institute of Management (IIM) Bangalore, Jain worked in the financial sector for 18 years in firms including Morgan Stanley and HDFC.