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Last Updated Friday April 21 2017 10:43 PM IST

Maharashtra: Congress loses Latur citadel to BJP in civic polls

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Maharashtra: Congress loses Latur citadel to BJP in civic polls  Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis. File photo

Mumbai: Continuing its winning streak in Maharashtra, the ruling BJP on Friday won Latur and Chandrapur municipal corporations, out of three civic bodies that went to polls on April 19.

Defeat in Latur came as a major embarrassment for the Congress as the district has traditionally been the bastion of the party stalwart and former chief minister (late) Vilasrao Deshmukh.

The results of the elections held for the three municipal corporations were declared Friday.

The consolation for the Congress was the Parbhani municipal corporation, where the party improved its tally compared to the 2012 polls to retain power.

In 65-member Parbhani civic body, the Congress won 31 seats, NCP 18, BJP 8, Shiv Sena 6, and Independents 2.

In 2012 polls, the Congress won 23 seats, NCP 30, Shiv Sena 8, BJP 2 and others 2.

The BJP's victory in Latur stands out as the saffron party, which drew a blank in the 2012 elections, bagged 36 seats Friday in the 70-member civic body. The Congress won 33 seats while one seat went to the NCP.

The Latur debacle reflects poorly on the leadership potential of Amit Deshmukh, the MLA son of late Vilasrao, who was steering the Congress in elections.

In 2012 polls to the Latur civic body, the Congress won 49 seats, NCP 13, and Shiv Sena 6. Remaining two seats were won by the smaller parties.

Chandrapur

The BJP pulled off another victory in the 66-member Chandrapur civic body, which was ruled by a coalition comprising the Congress and the NCP.

Chandrapur is the home district of the senior BJP leader and Maharashtra finance minister Sudhir Mungantiwar.

The final tally is: BJP (36), Congress (12), NCP (2), Shiv Sena (2), BSP (8), MNS (2), and Independents (4).

In 2012, the Congress won 26 seats, BJP 18, NCP 4, Shiv Sena 5, BSP 2, MNS 1, and Independents (10).

Hailing the BJP's performance, chief minister Devendra Fadnavis said, "BJP is creating history yet again."

He thanked the people of Latur and Chandrapur for the mandate to his party and for showing faith in his government.

A total of 7,93,621 voters were eligible to exercise their franchise in the three corporations, where 62 per cent voting was registered.

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