It Can’t Get Worse: NCP4,Congress2

MNS and AAP fail to open ac­count in the state

The Economic Times - - Pure Politics - RO­HIT CHANDAVARKAR

The Bharatiya Janata Party, Shiv Sena and its al­lies made a clean swee p in Ma­ha­rash­tra, de­liv­er­ing its big­gest blow ever to the UPA in a state that’s known to be a Congress bas­tion.

FromMum­baito­thetribald­is­trictof Nan­dur­bar,and­fromthe­sug­ar­beltof San­gli to the Vidarbha re­gion, the saf­fron al­liance dec­i­mated the Con­gressNa­tion­al­ist Congress Party (NCP) com­bine, re­duc­ing the UPA’s tally to a sin­gle digit in the 48-seat con­test. The NCP won 4 seats, while the Congress just 2. The BJP walked home with 23, with its ally pulling in 18.

Some of the se­nior-most UPA lead­ers, in­clud­ing Union min­is­ters such as Sushilku­mar Shinde, Milind De­ora, Praful Pa­tel, as well as min­is­ters hold­ing im­por­tant Cab­i­net portfolios in the state govern­ment, in­clud­ing Ch­ha­gan Bhu­jbal and Sunil Tatkare, lost out to rel­a­tively lesser known BJP and Sena can­di­dates.

UPA heavy­weights fell like ninepins in the state -- Shinde, Pa­tel, Priya Dutt, Milind­De­ora,Gu­ru­dasKa­mat,San­jay Niru­pam, all fell by the way­side. The on­ly­con­so­la­tion­totheCon­gress­came from Nanded, where for­mer Chief Min­is­ter Ashok Cha­van -- un­der scan­ner for his al­leged role in the Adarsh scam -- sailed through.

Raj Thack­eray’s Ma­ha­rash­tra Navnir­man Sena (MNS) and Arvind Ke­jri­wal’s Aam Aadmi Party too didn’t make any im­pact, and failed to even open their ac­count.

The state BJP pointed out that the Congress lead­er­ship should take re­spon­si­bil­ity for the de­ba­cle, and de­manded the res­ig­na­tion of its Chief Min­is­ter Prithvi­raj Cha­van. “I think the people of Ma­ha­rash­tra have voted over­whelm­ingly against the Congress and NCP. CM Cha­van should take moral re­spon­si­bil­ity and re­sign. The state govern­ment should be dis­missed and as­sem­bly elec­tions should be called,” said BJP state pres­i­dent Deven­dra Phadan­vis.

NCP chief Sharad Pawar ac­knowl­edged that this was an un­prece­dented ver­dict against the UPA in Ma­ha­rash­tra. “I con­grat­u­late Naren­dra Modi for this vic­tory. The num­bers that NDA has got will pro­vide a sta­ble gover nment, which is the pos­i­tive side for this polls,” said Pawar.

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