BJP-Sena Sweep in Maharashtra, May Win 32 Seats
Most exit polls on Monday predicted a saffron sweep in Maharashtra, with the BJP-Shiv Sena alliance likely to win anything between 31 and 33 seats. The Congress-NCP combine will take abigknock,withitstallyexpectedtobe somewhereintheregionof 13-16seats; it had bagged 25 seats in the 2009 Lok Sabhaelections.
If the exit poll predictions hit the mark, then it will be a saffron surge in the Congress Party’s traditional bastion in Maharashtra, considered the financial capital of India. Among the factors that could have contributed to the BJP-Sena’s resurgence in the state, apart from the Narendra Modi wave in cities such as MumbaiandPune,arethedisenchantment of voters against the CongressNCP c o mbi n e whi c h r u l e d Maharashtra for 15 years. Also, the growing resentment of farmers in VidarbhaandMarathwadacouldhave influenced poll results. BJPandShivSenawelcomedtheexit poll predictions. “We are very happy with the exit poll predictions for Maharashtra, and in fact, feel that we will surpass them and do even better than what has been assessed,” said BJP national spokesperson Prakash Jawdekar.
Buttherulingalliance,especiallythe Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), soundedsceptical.“Exitpollshavepredicted that NCP will win six seats in Maharashtra, but our assessment showsthatwewillwinmoreseatsthan last time. We will reach double digit figure,” said NCP’s national treasurer HemantTakle.
The exit polls, conducted by regional news channels in the state, gave Congress 9, NCP 6, Shiv Sena 11 and BJP 21 seats in Maharashtra. Which means,theBJP-Senacombinewillwin 32seatswhileCongress-NCPwillget15 seats, and one seat is likely to go to the AamAadamiParty(AAP).
In 2009, the overall voting in Maharashtra was 51.7%, while this year, it went up significantly to 61.0%, as per the figures provided by the Election Commission. Much of the increaseinthevotingpercentageisbeing attributed to anti-incumbency vote thatgrowsoutof resentment.
In the Mumbai region, including Mumbai city and Thane district, the BJP-Sena which managed only one seat in 2009, could win as many as 7 seats in this election, according to the exit polls.
According to the exit polls done by regional channels, the BJP-Shiv Sena combine is likely to make the biggest gains in the Vidarbha region where it is expected to win 9 out of the 10 seats.