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Lok Sabha Elections 2024: Congress retains leadership in Maharashtra after securing 13 seats

Out of the total 48 seats in Maharashtra, the Congress won 13 seats - the only party in the state to touch the double-digit mark.
Last Updated : 05 June 2024, 04:33 IST
Last Updated : 05 June 2024, 04:33 IST

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Mumbai: After a decade of drubbing, the Congress has managed to retain its dominant position in Maharashtra.

Mumbai is the birthplace of the Congress, often referred to as the grand old party of India.

Out of the total 48 seats in Maharashtra, the Congress won 13 seats - the only party in the state to touch the double-digit mark.

The Congress strike rate too was good as it contested just 17 seats and won 13.

With the Vidhan Sabha polls slated this year, the Congress would have a dominant position in seat-sharing within the Maha Vikas Aghadi (I.N.D.I.A. bloc).

The highest tally for the Congress came in 1984 when it won 43 seats and the lowest in 2019 when it managed just one seat.

"This is the beginning of the resolve to make Congress 'number one' in Maharashtra,” said Maharashtra Pradesh Congress Committee President Nana Patole.

Incidentally, Mumbai Regional Congress Committee President Prof Varsha Gaikwad won the polls from Mumbai North-Central against all odds - the only seat that the party won from the Mumbai-Konkan coastal belt.

The bulk of the seats came from their once stronghold of Vidarbha where it won six of the 10 seats - Anup Dhotre (Akola), Balwant Wankhede (Amravati-SC), Shyam Barve (Ramtek-SC), Dr Prashant Padole (Bhandara-Gondiya), Dr Kirsan Namdeo (Gadchiroli-Chimur-ST) and Pratibha Dhanorkar (Chandrapur).

Dhanorkar, the wife of late MP Balu Dhanorkar, who won the only Congress seat last time, defeated BJP’s stalwart Sudhir Mungantiwar, a six-time MLA.

The architect of the Vidarbha success story is Patole, Leader of the Opposition in the Assembly Vijay Wadettiwar and former five-time Saoner MLA Sunil Kedar, who was awarded a five-year jail sentence after his conviction in a 21-year-old alleged Rs 125 crore scam involving the Nagpur District Central Cooperative Bank following which he was disqualified from the Maharashtra Legislative Assembly.

The Congress managed two of the 10 seats from Western Maharashtra - Shrimant Shri Shahu Chhatrapati Maharaj (Kolhapur) and Praniti Shinde (Solapur-SC).

Two Congress seats came from North Maharashtra Govaal Padavi (Nandurbar-ST) and Shobha Bacchav (Dhule).

The Marathwada region has given three seats to the Congress kitty - Kalyan Kale (Jalna), Vasant Chavan (Nanded) and Dr Shivaji Kalge (Latur-SC).

This was despite the fact that veteran Marathwada leader and two-time Chief Minister Ashok Chavan left the Congress and joined the BJP to become a Rajya Sabha member.

Kale defeated BJP’s five-time Jalna MP and union minister Raosaheb Patil-Danve, who is a former state unit chief of the saffron party.

Congress rebel Vishal Patil, who contested as an Independent from Sangli against BJP’s two-time sitting MP Sanjaykaka Patil and Shiv Sena (UBT)’s Chandrahar Patil, won the polls.

Vishal is the grandson of Congressman Vasantdada Patil, who had been Chief Minister of Maharashtra three times between 1976 and 1985 and had also served as Governor of Rajasthan besides being a Sangli MP.

As far as success is concerned, Patole credited team work, Rahul Gandhi and his ‘Bharat Jodo Yatra’ and ‘Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra’, both of which traversed through Maharashtra.

“Maharashtra, which has the legacy of leaders like Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, Shahu, Phule, Ambedkar, has shown that the ‘khoka-arrangement’ does not work," Patole said.

In this election, the people of the state have taught a good lesson to all those who dislodged the MVA government in the state by trampling on the Constitution and insulting democracy,” said Patole.

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Published 05 June 2024, 04:33 IST

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