Nagpur: A year after storming to power in Maharashtra, the BJP seems to have suffered a considerable erosion of support base in Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis' home turf Vidarbha, losing to Congress-NCP in the municipal council polls in the region.
The Congress termed the poll outcome in Vidarbha region as a 'wake-up call' for ruling coalition. The BJP could succeed in getting a clear majority only in 3 out of 29 municipal councils in Vidarbha, the results of which were declared on Monday, while the Sena failed to win in
any these civic bodies. The Congress got a clear majority in five councils, while NCP emerged victorious in one.
One of the biggest setbacks to BJP was in Nagpur district, the home turf of Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and Union Transport and Shipping Minister Nitin Gadkari, as the party failed miserably in all the three councils of Kuhi, Hingana and Bhiwapur.
The BJP was in power in Hingana and Kuhi. On Monday, NCP won the Hingana municipal council poll, while Congress is one short of majority in Kuhi civic body. The Shiv Sena was not able to retain Bhiwapur, where the picture is hazy as out of the 17 seats, Congress won 5, Sena-4, BJP-3, BSP-3 and Independents-2.
The Chandrapur district, which is home to Finance Minister Sudhir Mungantiwar and also Union Minister of State Hansraj Ahir, also had an unflattering result for the BJP. The party won at Pombhurna municipal council in the district, while Congress won the Saoli civic body.
Besides, it turned out to be a disaster for BJP and Sena in Amravati district, as they are not in a position to take over in any of the four councils.
The Congress won Tiwsa civic body there, while NCP bagged Dharni. The Bhatkuli municipal council has been bagged by Independent MLA Ravi Rana's outfit, while Congress has an upper hand in Nandgaon-Khandeshwar.
Congress MLC Rajendra Mulak, who had once represented Umrer Assembly Constituency in Nagpur district, said the results are a 'wake-up call' for the ruling coalition. "There was growing dissatisfaction among the voters. The state and Central governments had promised a lot, but delivered nothing. The price rise of essential commodities has hit the common man very hard," said Mulak, who was Minister of State in the previous Congress-NCP government.