Congress, BJP gain in Maharashtra council polls
Mumbai: The ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and opposition Congress have emerged as the big gainers in polls to six seats of Maharashtra legislative council. Though not a test of the popular mood as the electoral college for these elections comprised the elected members of local self-government bodies, the results, released on Tuesday, have cheered the BJP and Congress and alarmed NCP as it changes the composition of Maharashtra legislative council.
The BJP and Congress won two seats each while the Shiv Sena and Nationalist Congress Party won a seat each. The Congress apparently gained at the cost of the NCP snatching both the seats from it. Of the six seats, the NCP could win only in Pune where its candidate Anil Bhosle defeated his Congress rival Sanjay Jagtap.
Maharashtra Congress president and former chief minister Ashok Chavan said the results have helped the Congress improve its numbers in the legislative council which is the upper house of Maharashtra legislature. The Congress tally in the 78-member legislative council has gone up to 20 while the NCP’s strength has come down to 23 from 26. The BJP has taken its tally to 17 and Shiv Sena to 9 after these elections. Chavan said both the Congress and NCP would have gained “had the NCP taken a conciliatory position before elections and struck a pre-poll alliance with the Congress”.
The results are also encouraging for chief minister Devendra Fadnavis, whose close confidante Parinay Phuke won from Bhandara-Gondia constituency in Vidarbha defeating his NCP rival. The BJP victory on this seat is a setback to NCP leader Praful Patel who was an MP from Bhandara-Gondia Lok Sabha constituency.
In Sangli-Satara constituency which has been the bastion of the NCP, Congress candidate Mohan Kadam won, defeating the NCP nominee Shekhar Gore.
The Congress also won Nanded seat which is also the home town of Ashok Chavan. In Yavatmal, Shiv Sena candidate Tanaji Sawant won against his Congress rival.