Despite the influence of the Shinde-Fadnavis government and the RSS in Maharashtra, the Congress showed its strength by winning the Kasba seat, which is known as the stronghold of the BJP. The same seat was won by BJP leader Girish Bapat five times and Mukta Tilak once. BJP’s defeat in Kasba is nothing less than a blow for the party. BJP’s short-sightedness is responsible for this. This seat became vacant after the death of Mukta Tilak. There, BJP nominated Hemant Rasane, who was defeated by Congress’s Ravindra Dhangekar by 10,951 votes, without giving a candidate to any of his relatives.
Since no one from Tilak’s family is a candidate, there is an anti-BJP atmosphere in the city. To meet this environment, the BJP made a collaboration of local Devsthan Pramukh, Sangh workers, relatives and acquaintances of BJP leaders from all over the state living in the city. As this seat is a question of honour, Deputy CM Devendra Fadnavis himself and Chief Minister Eknath Shinde camped there and used all means.
Even Home Minister Amit Shah came to the city on Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj’s birthday, but despite much fanfare, the Congress wrested this seat from the hands of the BJP after after almost 30 years. Ravindra Dhangekar, who contested the assembly elections for the third time, defeated the BJP’s Hemant Rasane, who tried his challenge for the first time. The discontent of the Brahmin voters, who are in the majority in this segment, also turned against JP. The conflicting policies of the BJP were clearly visible in the two by-elections in Maharashtra. Kukta Tilak’s family did not field a candidate in Kasba but in Pimpri-Chinchwad BJP made Laxman Jagtap’s wife a candidate.
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This group was a stronghold of Laxman Jagtap who left the NCP and joined the BJP. In Pimpri Chinchwad, the votes were divided between the authorized NCP candidate and the opposition candidate. The BJP got the benefit of this. If the three-party Mahavikas Aghadi remained there, then in Pimpri-Chinchwad too the BJP will have to chew the iron gram. It is true that one win or one loss does not change the power of the state, but this small vote can affect the decision-making power of the state government to hold elections. the government.
City elections in many cities including Pune, Pimpri-Chinchwad, Thane, Nagpur are stuck due to one reason or the other. After the failure in Nagpur, Amravati teachers and graduate district and now the defeat of the BJP in Kasba understand why the government elections have been postponed. If all the three groups of Maha Vikas Aghadi unite and compete against the BJP, then there could be a close fight. Chief Minister Eknath Shinde should show that he has influence outside Thane city and then he can help the BJP.