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CHIEF MINISTER ASHOK CHAVAN CONTINUES HIS GOLDEN RUN FOR OCNGRESS – GETS 4 SEATS FOR CONGRESS IN COUNCIL POLLS

disabled--3Chief Minister Ashok Chavan has silenced his detractors in the party as the Congress bagged four of the 10 seats in the legislative council elections. While the Sharad Pawar-led NCP managed to retain its political turf by winning its quota of three seats, the Shiv Sena suffered a setback by losing its only seat to the BJP. Sena’s Divakar Raote reached the winning post, but Anil Parab was defeated by the BJP’s Shobha Phadanvis in the final round. BJP’s Dhananjay Munde, Gopinath Munde’s nephew, won by 29 votes. Not only did the Congress win its three seats, but CM Ashok Chavan and MPCC Chief Manikrao Thakare strategized to get a bonus. A Chavan acolyte, Vijay Sawant, polled 13 first preference votes, while Parab secured 21 first preference. However, thanks to the clever strategy drafted by CM aides, Radhakrishna Vikhe-Patil and Harshvardhan Patil, Vijay Sawant secured second preference votes of Congress and NCP MLAs, leaving Phadanvis and Parab to fight it out over the 10th seat. Irrigation minister Ajit Pawar, architect of NCP’s victory, had threatened the Congress that it would not support the fourth candidate if the latter failed to force Independent candidate Kanhaiyalal Gidwani out of the Rajya Sabha fray. NCP state unit president Madhukar Pichad wrote to the CM, making a request as well. All the six candidates were elected unopposed to the RS on Thursday as Gidwani withdrew from the fray. The group of 13 MNS MLAs stayed away from the Vidhan Bhavan and were last to vote. Bureau report – NMTV News.

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