The ruling BJP on Wednesday put the record straight in the capital, retaining the post of mayor in the Bhopal Municipal Corporation (BMC) and reclaiming majority in the general council. The ruling party's Alok Sharma defeated Congress' Kailash Mishra by 86,332 votes to be elected as the new mayor of Bhopal.
Similarly, of the posts of 85 corporators on the general council, the BJP won 55 seats, Congress 26 and independents took 4. For the last two tenures, the post of mayor and majority in general council were being won by different parties. In 2004, the Congress had its mayor in Sunil Sood but the BJP won 39 out of 66 wards to become the majority party in general council of BMC.
The scenario turned on its head in 2009, when the BJP's Krishna Gaur was elected mayor but the Congress won 40 out of the 70 wards to get majority in general council. This year however, riding the saffron mood in entire state and most parts of the country, the ruling party of state managed to stamp its authority on the entire BMC.
"This is good news for the party as well as the people of Bhopal. Having mayor and council of the same party would mean that developmental works could be expedited without any unnecessary impediments," state higher education minister Umashankar Gupta, who was the convener of BJP campaign committee in state said, while talking to Hindustan Times.
Though the BJP managed to improve the winning margin for the mayor's post quite considerably compared to last two times, the fact that Congress' Kailash Mishra managed over 3.5 lakh votes remained a cause of concern, political observers say. Analysts pointed out that in a city where five out of the six MLAs are of ruling BJP, the winning margin could have been much higher.