MUMBAI: The major victory of the BJP in the recent Rajya Sabha elections against Shiv Sena has boosted the morale of its workers and leaders ahead of high stake BMC elections that is scheduled by end of this year.
BMC has been ruled by the Shiv Sena since last over 25 years earlier with the support of the BJP, now independently.
Congress party earlier tried hard to dethrone the Shiv Sena from BMC, but it consecutively failed. In 2017, BJP first time gave a tough fight under the leadership of senior BJP leader Ashish Shelar and BJP won the 82 seats against 85 seats of the Shiv Sena in total of 227 members of the House.
Former chief Devendra Fadnavis said that BJP’s victory in Rajya Sabha election is the beginning…."We will do better and better in the upcoming elections. The state assembly and other elections, BJP will contest on its own," Fadnavis added.
Senior BJP leader said that in 2017, they had shown that BJP can give a tough fight to Shiv Sena.
“We were almost close to throwing out the Shiv Sena in BMC elections in 2017. We won 82 seats while Shiv Sena got 85 seats. There were only three seats differences. The smaller parties and independent were ready to support BJP to keep Shiv Sena out of power in BMC. But it was a deliberate call not to do so despite a major victory in BMC. The reason we were sharing the power with Shiv Sena in Maharashtra, therefore, didn’t want to disturb the important ally. Now, we are free and eager to show the place to Shiv Sena in 2022 BMC elections,” said BJP Leader requesting anonymity.
Senior BJP leader Ashish Shelar said that the Rajya Sabha against Shiv Sena has definitely boosted their morale ahead of the BMC elections. He said along with BMC, there are ten urban local body elections where BJP performance will be better than any other political party. Shelar said people are fed up with Shiv Sena rule in BMC.
“People want good road, round the clock water supply and clean nullahs. But Shiv Sena plays only emotional politics ahead of every elections. Last time in 2017, we were almost there and this time we will be surely there with single largest parry in BMC elections,” he added. Shelar has been also made incharge of the BJP’s BMC elections.
However, Shiv Sena has been also working on the counter strategy in view of BJP threat in BMC elections.
“Shiv Sena in delimitation increased the civic wards numbers from 227 to 236 in 2022 elections. Besides, most of the wards pro dominated by the Marathi manoos. BJP voters particularly Gujarati and North Indian-dominated area has less wards than Marathi-dominated areas. It will help the Shiv Sena to shore up more seats in own traditional bastion. Besides, Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray is himself Maharashtra's chief minister and that advantage BMC had when Devendra Fadnavis was chief minister in the 2017 elections. Besides, BMC elections is always about the Marathi manoos. It’s very different and emotional election. The Marathi voters in the rest of Maharashtra and Mumbai’s Marathi voters' voting pattern is different. Mumbai’s Marathi voters feel insure if there is no Shiv Sena in Mumbai. But BJP will not leave stone unturned to dethrone the Shiv Sena in BMC elections. Let’s see how it pans out,” said a senior political observer.