In a dramatic betrayal, Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), the principal ally of the Congress-led Democratic Front government in the state, joined hands with the BJP-Shiv Sena combine to keep the Congress out of power in zilla parishads of the Vidarbha region.
While polling for the zilla parishads (ZP) was held on February 7, election for the posts of presidents and vice-presidents deciding control of the seven ZPs in the region was held on Wednesday.
By aligning with the opposition, the NCP got three presidents and five vice-presidents elected as against two presidents for the Congress. The BJP managed to get two presidents and two vice-presidents.
In Nagpur ZP, NCP surprised everyone by extending supporting to BJP candidate Sandhya Gotmare for the president’s post. In return, NCP candidate Chandrashekhar Chikhale got the support of the BJP for the vice-president’s post. NCP will now share power in Nagpur with BJP, Shiv Sena and Gondwana Gantantrik Party taking their combined strength to 38 in the 59-member house. In Yavatmal, NCP won the posts of both the president and vice-president. This means the Congress will not control Yavatmal ZP for the first time in 50 years.
In Chandrapur, Santosh Kumre of BJP became president while Sandeep Gaddam-war (NCP) his deputy. In Gadchiroli, NCP won the president’s post while the post of vice-president went to BJP. Congress won Wardha and Buldana ZPs. In Wardha, Dyneshwar Dhage was elected as president and Sanjay Kamnapure (NCP) as vice-president.