Poll pundits predict hung house, Congress-NCP alliance for power

Say just 51% overall voting and low turnout in fringe areas may hit NCP, Sena

As the low voter turnout indicates a hung house in the 152-member Pune Municipal Corporation, political observers say this may compel the Congress and the NCP to go for an alliance to establish their rule in the civic body.

Every vote counts: People wait to cast their vote at Sanas Vidyalaya in
Dhayari yesterday. Pic/Krunal Gosavi

Political observers said that factors like just 51 per cent average voting in the city yesterday and fringe areas witnessing the lowest turnouts would also be responsible for reducing the individual and loyal votes of the NCP and the Shiv Sena. They said in this scenario, the NCP and the Congress were likely to come together to grab power in the house. According to them, the BJP and the MNS would be successful in maintaining their traditional seats.

Fringe areas factor
Political expert Prakash Pawar, who was keeping tabs on the overall voting trends as they kept developing yesterday, said it was unusual to have low turnout in the fringe areas and this would have a direct impact on the number of seats of the NCP and the Shiv Sena.

"The central part of the city, which includes all peths, and Kothrud was brimming with enthusiasm, which surely indicates that the BJP and the MNS will turn up a good performance in the election at the individual level. But the Mahayuti (Shiv Sena-BJP-RPI-A) is not likely to come to power as the Shiv Sena and the RPI will not get the expected number of votes," Pawar said.

Pawar added that the NCP and the Congress will show remarkable growth. "The NCP and the Congress are likely to join hands soon," he said. Pawar said the NCP and the Congress might have to go in for an alliance in the Solapur and the Nashik civic bodies also to gain power. Political scientist Nitin Birmal said the Congress and the NCP were together likely to get 85-90 seats, while the Mahayuti might get 45-50 seats in the Pune Municipal Corporation election.

Affluent localities
"The low voter turnout in affluent areas like Koregaon Park, Viman Nagar and Kalyani Nagar may reduce the Congress party's traditional votes. But the overall seat count will increase after an alliance with the NCP," Birmal said. Political observers also said the MNS was likely to increase its seats in the civic house.

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