Elections 2021

BJP-Shiv Sena to gain majority in Maharashtra

Our Bureau Mumbai/Chandigarh | Updated on October 24, 2019

Devendra Fadnavis, Chief Minister of Maharashtra

The ruling coalition set to return to power despite surprise performance by NCP-Congress

The BJP-Shiv Sena alliance was moving towards a simple majority in Maharashtra with winners declared in 136 seats and a clear lead in 26 other seats. But it was not going to be an easy task for the BJP to form the government as Shiv Sena had already started flexing muscles.

Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray said during Lok Sabha elections that the formula of “sharing everything equally” was worked out with the senior leadership of the BJP.

During the talks for Assembly elections, an understanding was worked out with BJP that 144 seats would be contested by BJP plus its allies and the other 144 seats by Shiv Sena. But BJP’s State president Chandrakant Patil had said that they had certain difficulties in accepting the arrangement seat sharing arrangement on equal basis. “But if Shiv Sena as a party has to grow then it has to share the power equally with BJP,” he said. “The voters in Maharashtra have given a mandate, which have opened the eyes of the people. Those who don’t abide by it could face more issues,” Thackeray said.

Magic of Sharad Pawar

Inspite of negative exit poll predictions, the Nationalist Congress Party led by Sharad Pawar along with the Congress and its allies managed to gain a respectable victory in 84 seats till results last came in. The opposition alliance was leading in 18 additional seats.

All political observers, inspite of their differing ideologies, commended Pawar for the gumption of uniting all anti-BJP forces and pulling the Opposition out of the abyss of irrelevance in Maharashtra.

Interacting with media, Pawar said he was not in any favour of an alliance with Shiv Sena to form the state government. “The mandate is to sit in the Opposition. The thought of trying to get into power is not in mind of the party. NCP will work to expand its cadre base,” he said.

Notable wins

Among the most eagerly contested fight in the State was between NCP leader Dhananjay Munde and his estranged cousin Pankaja Munde at Parli in Beed district. The NCP leader secured 1.22 lakh votes as against 91,413 votes bagged by his BJP opponent.

“I am happy. But I am also sad somewhere, being the elder in the family. Whether they consider me as part of the family or not, the blood relation never breaks. I am pained that someone in the family has been defeated,” Dhananjay Munde said.

Young prince

Barely a few years after being initiated into politics by Shiv Sena’s founder Bal Thackeray , young Aaditya Thackeray — the grandson son of the party’s founder — has debuted in electoral politics by winning the Worli seat in central Mumbai by 89,248 votes and capturing 69 per cent of the polled votes. His nearest rival Suresh Mane of NCP got 21,780 votes.

A section of party supporters wants a new face in the party and are looking at him as the next Chief Ministerial candidate or at least Deputy Chief Ministerial candidate.

Among the noticeable win for BJP is of Nitesh Rane from Kankavali constituency from the coastal Konkan region with 82,284 votes. It is also one of the few constituency where Shiv Sena, inspite of in an alliance with the BJP, had fielded its own candidate. Shiv Sena’s candidate managed to a sizeable 56,171 votes.

 

PTI adds:

Haryana: BJP leads in 47 seats, Congress in 31

In Haryana, the Congress, which failed to bag even one seat in the Lok Sabha polls, won or was ahead in 31 of the 90 seats at stake compared to its previous tally of 15. The BJP, which had 47 seats in the outgoing 90-member house, won or was ahead in 40 seats. The half-way mark is 46.

All eyes were on the fledgling Jannayak Janta Party(JJP) which was floated last year by Dushyant Chautala, a former MP from Hisar, after a vertical split in the once powerful INLD following a family feud in the Chautala clan.

Dushyant remained non-committal on whether his party would support the BJP or the Congress in forming a government in the event of a hung assembly. The JJP won 9 seats and was leading in one.

As Haryana headed for a hung assembly as per the latest trends, the BJP high command is understood to have summoned Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar to Delhi.The BJP had set a target of winning 75 seats.

Latest trends

As per the results and trends available in Maharashtra, the BJP’s tally in the 288-member Assembly was 99 while it was 57 for the Sena. In the 2014 polls, the BJP and the Sena won 122 and 63 seats respectively. They had then contested separately. The Sena joined the Fadnavis-led government over a month after it was formed.

NCP won or was ahead in 55 while the Congress’ tally was 44. The NCP and the Congress bagged 41 and 42 seats in the outgoing house.

With trends in Maharashtra showing the BJP falling short of the halfway-mark on its own, its ally and Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray said it was time to implement “fifty-fifty” formula for power-sharing, decided on earlier.

“Maharashtra mandate is an eye-opener for many,” Thackeray told reporters in Mumbai.

“We had agreed to contest fewer seats (than the BJP), but I cannot accommodate the BJP every time. I should allow my party to grow,” Uddhav said, indicating that he would drive a hard bargain.

Pawar told reporters that the message was that people did not like “the arrogance of power“.

Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, Shiv Sena leader Aaditya Thackeray, and Leader of Opposition in Legislative Council Dhananjay Munde who trounced estranged cousin and BJP minister Pankaja Munde in a keenly-contested poll battle were among the prominent winners.

“Clear mandate by voters, the next governmentt will be of BJP-Sena mahayuti (grand alliance),” Fadnavis told reporters.

In an electoral contest in Haryana with no clear winner, Dushyant Chautala could well emerge the kingmaker. The INLD was leading in one, Independents in seven and the BSP in one.

Taking a swipe at the BJP’s “Mission 75”, Chautala said it would fall way short of its target of winning 75 seats.

Declaring that his party will hold the key to formation of the next government he told reporters, “People of Haryana want change.”

Asked which party the JJP would support, he said, “It’s too early to say anything. We will first summon a meeting of our MLAs, decide who would be our leader in the House and then take it further.”

The people of Haryana had rejected the ruling BJP and was ready to “embrace a new dawn of justice,” said state Congress chief Kumari Selja.

“Haryana has given the verdict--it will not tolerate @BJP4Haryana’s misgovernance any more. Choosing to leave behind the maladies inflicted on its people in last 5years,the state is ready to embrace a new dawn of justice & equality under the leadership of @INCHaryana,” Selja tweeted.

Senior Congress leader and former chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda, who won from his stronghold Garhi Sampla-Kiloi in Rohtak district, urged non-BJP outfits to join hands.

In what appears to be a setback for the BJP, which placed considerable emphasis on Article 370, Jammu and Kashmir and other national issues in this campaign, seven of its ministers, assembly Speaker and state party chief in Haryana lost or were trailing.

Published on October 24, 2019

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