Bhartiya Janta Party chief Nitin Gadkari received a shot in the arm when the BJP-Shiv Sena alliance retained power in the Nagpur Municipal Corporation and the Nagpur Zilla Parishad on Friday.
However, outgoing Mayor Archana Dehankar (BJP) and deputy Mayor Shekhar Sawarbandhe (Shiv Sena) lost their battles, though it did not take the credit away from Gadkari who had announced his candidature for the 2014 Lok Sabha elections from Nagpur.
The Congress and NCP had to remain content with gaining control of Amravati civic body despite heavy odds — the latest being the taint of Rs1 crore cash haul, while the saffron combine emerged as the single largest entity in the Akola Municipal Corporation, winning 27 of the 73 seats. But the key to taking control of the corporation rests with the independents and Prakash Ambedkar of Akola Vikas Manch, which won nine seats.
The results, however, dealt a big blow to the high-profile AICC general secretary and six-time Lok Sabha member Vilas Muttemwar, who undermined state minister Nitin Raut and city Congress president Jaiprakash Gupta when it came to distribution of party tickets and poll campaigning.
In Amravati, the Congress and the NCP can control the reins of the civic body with the help of RPI, despite no pre-poll alliance between the Congress and NCP. The Congress got 25 seats while the NCP bagged 17 out of 87. The RPI got three seats.