Mumbai: A pro-Congress undercurrent for stability coupled with MNS acting as a spoiler for the rival Shiv Sena-BJP combine, ruling Congress-NCP coalition in Maharashtra improved its performance in Lok Sabha polls.
It was Congress that emerged as a clear winner improving its tally of seats to 17, four more than the 2004 elections whereas its ally NCP suffered setback in two seats in Western Maharashtra.
NCP rebel Sadashiv Mandlik won Kolhapur seat defeating NCP’s official nominee while Raju Shetty of Shetkari Sanghatna won the Hatkanangale seat defeating NCP.
Congress-NCP’s principal adversary Shiv Sena-BJP was stunned by the spectacular showing of Raj Thackeray-led Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) in the 12 seats it contested in the three-year old party’s maiden foray into parliamentary elections.
The saffron combine lost five seats including Mumbai North, Mumbai North East, Thane, Nashik and Mumbai North West.
In crucial Mumbai-Thane-Konkan belt, which comprises 12 Lok Sabha seats, Congress bagged seven seats, NCP two, Shiv Sena 2, one seat was won by Bahujan Vikas Party in Palghar in Thane district.