The BJP on Tuesday swept elections to 6 municipal corporations in Gujarat by winning 483 of the 576 seats. The ruling party retained power in all the 6 municipal corporations in the state — Ahmedabad, Surat, Vadodara, Rajkot, Jamnagar and Bhavnagar. The polls had been held on February 21.
The main opposition Congress got a drubbing, as it won only 55 seats and failed even to open account in Surat. On the other hand, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) put up an impressive show by winning 27 seats, all in Surat, and emerged as the main opposition in the Surat Municipal Corporation. The AAP had for the first time fielded 470 candidates across all the 6 corporations.
The BJP won 159 of the 192 seats in Ahmedabad, 68 of the 72 seats in Rajkot, 50 of the 64 seats in Jamnagar, 44 of the 52 seats in Bhavnagar, 69 of 76 seats in Vadodara and 93 of 120 seats in Surat.
Congress, on the other hand, won seats in single digit in 3 corporations, and drew a blank in Surat.
The party won 25 seats in Ahmedabad, 4 in Rajkot, 11 in Jamnagar, 8 in Bhavnagar and 7 in Vadodara. Asaduddin Owaisi’s AIMIM, which also contested local body polls in Gujarat for the first time, won 7 seats in Ahmedabad’s Muslim-dominated Jamalpur and Maktampura wards. 3 candidates of the Bahujan Samaj Party won in Jamnagar, while an independent candidate won only in Ahmedabad. The BJP had won 389 seats and Congress 176 across the 6 civic bodies in the 2016 elections.
The saffron party gained 94 seats while Congress lost 121 seats this time.
In a series of tweets, PM Modi thanked the people of Gujarat and BJP workers for the victory. “Thank you Gujarat! Results of municipal elections across the state clearly show the unwavering faith people have towards politics of development and good governance.
“Grateful to the people of the state for trusting BJP yet again. Always an honour to serve Gujarat,” he said.
He appreciated the efforts of party workers and said the state government’s pro-people policies have had a positive impact on the entire state. “Today’s win across Gujarat is very special. For a party that is serving in a state for over two decades to record such a phenomenal win is noteworthy. It is heartening to see widespread support from all sections of society, particularly the youth of Gujarat towards BJP,” Modi said in another tweet.
Union Home Minister Amit Shah, on a visit to Ahmedabad, congratulated CM Vijay Rupani and state BJP chief CR Patil on BJP’s win.
In a tweet, Shah, who himself voted in Ahmedabad on February 21, congratulated the people of Gujarat “for once more believing in the BJP’s symbol of development and progress in the metropolitan local body elections.” CM Rupani took the opportunity to attack Congress. He said the voters “mercilessly thrashed” Congress, with many of its candidates losing their deposits and several leaders facing defeat.