BJP loses Sangh heartland to Congress in Maharashtra Legislative Council elections

The loss is made prominent by the fact that the seat had been a base for Devendra Fadnavis, Union Minister Nithin Gadkari, and the headquarters of RSS
The winners
The winners

The outcome of elections at the six Maharashtra Legislative Council seats — three Graduates, two Teachers, and Dhule-cum-Nandurbar Local Authorities — has shocked the Bharatiya Janata Party. The BJP was only able to win one seat in the whole process, as the Nationalist Congress Party-Shiv Sena-Congress alliance swept away from BJP its strongholds.

The winner of the whole process would be the Congress party who had taken away from BJP not one but three of its power centres. The BJP, through the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, has enjoyed considerable clout in Nagpur — where the RSS is headquartered and where BJP had been winning for the past three decades — and Pune.

However, the Congress’ Jayant Dinkar Aasgavkar and Abhijit Wanjari have easily overthrown the dominant forces in Pune Teachers and Nagpur Graduates — respectively — by a comfortable margin. Meanwhile, NCP’s Arun Lad and Satish Chavan from Pune Graduates and Aurangabad Graduates constituencies, marking BJP’s loss even more prominent. Moreover, an independent candidate has won the Amravati seat.

Nagpur has always been a BJP-RSS stronghold ­— more like an impregnable fort — until Congress proved otherwise. Sandip Joshi trailed behind Wanjari in Nagpur, which is quite impressive, seeing how Joshi has been a close aide of former Maharashtra CM and current Opposition Leader Devendra Fadnavis. The Fadnavis family and Union Minister Nitin Gadkari have personally enjoyed clout and strength in Nagpur, which, if the current results are any indications, seems to be slipping away from them.

Addressing media persons, Devendra Fadnavis has said that they had “underestimated the power of the Maha Vikas Aghadi,” and NCP chief Sharad Pawar told media that these victories are the “people’s approval of the one year of the MVA government.”

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