Shiv Sena leads pack as Aghadi wins local body polls

Express News Service
MUMBAI: The ruling Maha Vikas Aghadi emerged as the winner in the local body polls by bagging 6,799 grama panchayats out of the 11,795 whose results were declared on Monday.

The race is for 14,234 gram panchayats, 2,000 of which have elected their heads unopposed. Shiv Sena leads the race with 2,576 seats, closely followed by BJP with 1,563. The other constituents of the MVA – NCP (2,400) and Congress (1,823) – accounted for 4,223 seats. Raj Thackeray-led MNS could muster only 36 seats, while independent candidates bagged 2,337 seats. 

Many BJP stalwarts, including former BJP minister Ram Shinde, Maharashtra BJP state president Chandrakant Patil, BJP Rajya Sabha MP Udayan Raje Bhosale, saw their villages fall into the rival camp, prompting a jibe from Home Minister and senior NCP leader Anil Deshmukh that the saffron party would do well to perform as a good opposition. Deshmukh said the trend was in Aghadi’s favour.

“People voted for our government. They are happy with our policies. We will continue under the banner of Maha Vikas Aghadi,” Deshmukh said.

Referring to the recent graduate and teacher legislative council elections, Deshmukh said that the Aghadi had won five out of the total six seats. “The trend in Maharashtra shows that the people here have rejected the BJP. Now, BJP should not dream of coming back to power,” Deshmukh added.

Maharashtra Congress president Balasaheb Thorat hailed the victory of the Aghadi and pointed out that Congress, too, had performed well. “We are hopeful winning more seats as people have reposed their trust in us. BJP needs to introspect. It should stop raising non-issues like Arnab Goswami and espouse the issues of farmers,” Thorat said.

However, former chief minister and BJP MLA Devendra Fadnavis exuded confidence that his party would emerge as the single largest party after the counting. Referring to BJP’s landslide victory in the Konkan region, he said, “Sena should introspect and work for the people. BJP will emerge the largest party.” 

Single largest party

Referring to the BJP’s landslide victory in the Konkan region, BJP MLA Devendra Fadnavis exuded confidence that his party would emerge as the single largest party