Maha mayoral polls: Sena-Cong-NCP get the better of BJP

Mumbai, Nov 22 (PTI) The BJP was outsmarted on Fridayby emerging political combinations in Maharashtra and lostmayoral polls in Latur and Ulhasnagar despite having amajority in both civic bodies.

The Shiv Sena managed to win the posts of mayor anddeputy mayor in Mumbai and neghbouring Thane.

The BJP, however, managed to keep its flock togetherand got the support of the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena to winthe posts of mayor and deputy mayor in Nashik.

In Latur, the Congress' Vikrant Gojamgunde was electedmayor, in what is being seen as a setback for former BJPminister Sambhaji Nilangekar.

In Ulhasnagar, the BJP, despite having a majority inthe municipal corporation, was beaten by former saffron allyShiv Sena which won the mayor's post after it got the supportof the NCP, Congress and a local outfit called Team Omi Kalani(TOK).

In Mumbai, the Sena's Kishori Pednekar and SuhasWadkar were elected unopposed as mayor and deputy mayorrespectively as the BJP did not field candidates for the twoposts.

The Sena's Naresh Mhaske and Pallavi Kadam wereelected mayor and deputy mayor respectively of Thane MunicipalCorporation.

In Parbhani, Anita Sonkamble and Bhagwan Waghmare ofthe Congress, which is the largest party in the civic body,were elected mayor and deputy mayor.

In Nashik, Satish Kulkarni of the BJP was electedmayor after a group of its corporators, who were cosying up tothe Sena, stayed back.

With five MNS corporators also voting for the BJPcandidates in the Nashik Municipal Corporation, the latter wonthe deputy mayor's post as well, with 82-year Bhikubai Bagulgetting the post unopposed.

In the 70-member Latur civic body, BJP had 36 andCongress 33 corporators while the NCP had one. One BJPcorporator died and the lone NCP corporator joined the VanchitBahujan Aghadi.

During polls on Friday, two BJP corporators and thelone one from VBA voted for the Congress, while one corporatorfrom the Congress, Sachin Mhaske, was absent.

A rebel BJP corporator, Chandrakant Birajdar, waselected Latur deputy mayor after he defeated his formercolleague Bhagyashree Koulkhere with the help of the Congress.

Although the ruling BJP had a clear majority in theNashik Municipal Corporation, the Shiv Sena tried garneringsupport from the Congress, NCP and MNS, similar to its effortsfor forming a government in the state.

Former mayor Balasaheb Sanap had left the BJP andjoined the NCP to contest the recent state Assembly polls,after the former denied him a ticket. He then went on tojoin the Shiv Sena.

Around 10 to 15 of Sanap's supporters were won overby Shiv Sena, making things difficult for the BJP.

While Ajay Boraste was the Sena's candidate for theNashik mayor's post, Kamalesh Bodke was chosen by the partyfor the deputy mayor's post.

However, all equations changed at the last minute,when MNS decided to back the BJP in NMC. PTI MR CORBNM BNM