Amid quota stir, the Bharatiya Janata Party in Maharashtra on Friday, 3 August, trounced the Shiv Sena in the Jalgaon civic body polls, winning 57 of the 75 seats, and came up trumps in the Sangli municipal elections, bagging 41 out of the 78 seats.
The BJP, an ally of the Shiv Sena in the state and at the Centre, won 57 of the 75 seats in the Jalgaon Municipal Corporation (JMC).
Prime Minister Narendra Modi lauded his party after the results in a tweet. He thanked the people of Maharashtra for their continued "faith" in the BJP following the party's win in two civic polls.
Results Have Proved People Trust the BJP: Fadnavis
Talking to reporters, Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis said despite the Maratha quota stir, people in Jalgaon and Sangli voted for the BJP overwhelmingly.
People supported the BJP since they are aware our government is making sincere efforts to ensure reservation in jobs and education (for the Marathas). People know only we can fulfil their demands.Devendra Fadnavis
He said the results have proved people trust the BJP.
"The demand for reservation is not new. It is only we who are sincerely pursuing it," the chief minister added.
In a veiled warning to the Shiv Sena, Fadnavis said: “In Sangli, the Congress and the NCP contested together, but people trusted the BJP. This proves beyond doubt what is in the people’s mind.” The Shiv Sena had earlier announced it will fight all future polls alone.
Nationalist Congress Party spokesman Nawab Malik alleged that the BJP won by using "money and muscle power" while Congress leader Anant Gadgil claimed that the BJP's victory was due to "unethical use" of its position in power.
Local strongman and Shiv Sena leader Suresh Jain's Khandesh Vikas Agadhi (KVA), which ruled the JMC for several years, won only 13 seats. The KVA, a local outfit which contested the election on the Shiv Sena symbol this time, had 36 seats in the JMC.
The All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) bagged three seats, while Independents won two seats.
The NCP, which had 11 corporators in the civic body, drew a blank. The Congress in Jalgaon failed to open its account for the second consecutive time.
The BJP also posted an impressive victory in the Sangli-Miraj-Kupwad Municipal Corporation, winning 41 seats in the 78-member House and ousting the Congress from power.
The Congress, the current ruling party in the civic body in western Maharashtra, won only 20 seats, while its ally, the NCP, got 15. Others won two seats.
The BJP did not have a single corporator in the civic body.
The elections to the two civic bodies were held on 1 August and counting of votes took place on Friday.