It has been fall from grace for the Navi Mumbai Congress and perhaps most embarrassing for Chief Minister Ashok Chavan as all the three places where the Chief Minister campaigned, the Congress has faced humiliating defeats. In fact it wouldn’t be wrong to say that even the Chief Minister’s rally could not save local bigwigs Namdeo Bhagat, Ramakant Mhatre, Avinash Lad and Shashikant Bhoir from biting the dust in NMMC polls. This blackmailing statement of Chief Minister Ashok Chavan during Congress party’s election rallies has backfired and how. Congress faced the most humiliating defeats in the party’s history in Navi Mumbai as four local bigwigs of the party lost the NMMC elections. This includes the Navi Mumbai Congress Chief Namdeo Bhagat who lost against Shiv Sena candidate Dilip Ghodekar. The party’s Opposition Leader in NMMC Ramakant Mhatre lost the elections against NCP’s Balkrishna Patil. Another humiliating defeat was in Shashikant Bhoir’s ward. The ward was being seen as a battle of prestige for NCP and Congress as Shashikant Bhoir had defected to the Congress prior to municipal elections despite the NCP giving his wife Manisha Bhoir the honour of becoming the Mayor of Navi Mumbai. Shashikant Bhoir lost the elections against NCP’s newcomer Madhukar Mukadam. On the other hand NCP’s young educated engineer candidate Vaibhav Gaikwad created another major upset for the Congress by defeating Avinash Lad. Ironically, all the Congress candidates have lost municipal polls from ward where the Chief Minister Ashok Chavan and MPCC Chief Manicrao Thackeray had personally campaigned for their candidates. The Congress faces who salvaged some pride for the party are Santosh Shetty, Anita Shetty, Indumati Bhagat, Pranali Lad and Amit Patil. The most embarrassing aspect of these elections was the defeat of Navi Mumbai Shiv Sena Chief Vijay Chougule who had filed his nominations as an Independent candidate from ward no. 5 Iltanpada, the reasons for which are known only to him and the Shiv Sena party. Vijay Chougule had earlier lost parliamentary and assembly elections and now has lost even the municipal elections, which can be termed as a dubious record for any politician. Bureau report – NMTV News.
November 11, 2011