Parag Shah may be fighting his first election, but he is hogging a lot of attention for being the richest candidate in the Mumbai civic body poll fray this year with assets worth a whopping Rs 690 crore.
The BJP candidate from ward No 132 in suburban Ghatkopar is a real estate developer and is pitted against sitting Congress Corporator and Leader of Opposition in BMC Praveen Chheda. The 47-year-old realtor-politician is said to share close rapport with senior BJP leaders in the State and is confident of romping home in the February 21 polls to the country's richest civic body, which boasts of an annual budget of over Rs 37,000 crore.
According to his self-sworn affidavit attached to the nomination form, Shah has movable and immovable assets worth Rs 690 crore, making him the richest among the 2,276 nominees who are in the poll ring. He owns flats in Mumbai and Thane, and agricultural and non-agricultural land in Maharashtra and Gujarat. Shah's real estate company has projects in Mumbai besides Gujarat and Chennai.
The ward from where he is contesting is dominated by members of Jain and Gujarati communities and includes areas like Garodia Nagar, Somaiya College, Rajawadi Hospital and ONGC Colony. "Yes, it is true that I am contesting for the first time, but I am not new to politics or the locality. I have been very active in the area," Shah said, adding he is confident of defeating the Congress heavyweight