Analysis of Maharashtra Elections 2014 Results
The verdict of Maharashtra assembly elections result is along expected lines. Despite emerging as the single largest party in Maharashtra, BJP is still short of that 145-mark.
Having won less than 20% of the total seats, Congress faced great humiliation. Shiv Sena ended as a runner up with 62 seats, making it the second most popular party.
Shocking Defeats for Ex-Maharashtra Ministers
Senior Congress leader Narayan Rane was certainly a big name in this assembly election. His defeat has come as a shock to the party. Rane lost to Shiv Sena's Vaibhav Naik by over 9,000 votes in Kudal constituency. Harshwardhan Patil, the sitting MLA of Indapur, also lost to NCP's Dattatraya Bharne by a margin of 14,000 votes. Both Rane and Patil were among the fourteen ex-ministers of Maharashtra who failed to score a victory this time.
Silver Lining for Congress, NCP
Prithviraj Chavan's massive win from the Karad (south) constituency proved that the anti-incumbency wave against Congress couldn't make any dent on the ex-Chief Minister's image. Chavan must be a relieved man as he defeated seven-time MLA Vilaskaka Undalkar Patil.
Ajit Pawar also had an easy win this time. Contesting from Baramati constituency, the NCP strongman won with a margin of about 90,000 votes. The victory becomes even more valuable if viewed from a larger perspective - NCP has won only 3 out of 21 seats in Pune district, which is again a decline from seven seats it had bagged in 2009.
Easy Wins for Key BJP Leaders
BJP's key leaders had easy wins this time. The party's state president Devendra Fadnavis, who is also the much-touted frontrunner for the CM post, won from Nagpur South West constituency by edging past his closest rival, Congress' Prafulla Vinod Gudadhe by 58942 votes.
Vinod Tawde, who contested from Borivali, also registered a thumping victory by defeating his rival from Shiv Sena by a huge margin of 79,267 votes. Pankaja Munde, the daughter of Gopinath Munde emerged a winner from the Parli constituency with an impressive margin of 25,000 votes.
Ex-opposition leader Eknath Khadse, who is also reportedly in the race for Chief Minister's post, managed to defeat his Shiv Sena rival in Muktainagar constituency. Ex-BJP state president Sudhir Mungantiwar defeated Congress' Mulchandani Ghanshyam Khushimal by 43,000 votes in Ballarpur constituency.
Shiv Sena's Conciliatory Tone
In no unclear terms, the party has indicated a possible reconciliation with BJP. After the verdict was out, a Shiv Sena MP went on record to say that the party will consider an alliance with BJP to form government in Maharashtra once the latter submits a proposal for a stable government. The MP also said that there's "no bitterness" between the two parties.
NCP Reaches Out to BJP
It was one of the few developments not along the expected lines. NCP leader Praful offered outside support to the BJP to ensure "stability in the government" as no party has gained a majority. With this unexpected announcement, a doubt has emerged on the possibility of re-cementing 25-year-old BJP-Shiv Sena alliance, which both the parties were exploring. However, if BJP concedes to NCP's decision then it would reduce the saffron party's dependence on the estranged ally.