Fadnavis Uses NCP's Performance as Argument to Counter Shiv Sena’s Claim to Maharashtra CM Chair
The Maharashtra chief minister said the BJP's strike rate has been the best ever in the history of the state even though it won fewer seats compared to the Assembly polls in 2014.
File photo of Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis (Image: PTI)
New Delhi: In his first press conference after the BJP emerged as the single largest party in Maharashtra, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis on Thursday said his party’s strike rate has been the best ever in the history of the state even though it won fewer seats compared to the Assembly polls in 2014.
"I thank the people of Maharashtra for giving a clear mandate to the 'mahayuti' (grand alliance). No doubt the next government will be ours," he said.
"In fact, it is time to celebrate and not analyse. But if we look at the result, the BJP had in 2014 contested 260 seats and won 122. This time, we fought 164 and are likely to get 105. Our strike is rate better, we won 70% of the seats," said Fadnavis.
Noting that he BJP received 28% of the total votes in the 2014 Assembly elections, he said, "This time we have got 26.5% of the votes despite contesting 164 seats."
The BJP contested on 164 of the 288 seats in the state while its ally, the Shiv Sena, fought on 124. Fadnavis said that 15 Independent and rebel candidates are in touch with him.
Indirectly hinting at the Sena’s claim for the chief minister’s post, Fadnavis said the opposition had performed better and managed to win more seats. “The opposition won many seats,” he said.
Fadnavis also hit out at Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) chief Sharad Pawar, stating the veteran leader said the opposition parties would ensure a clean sweep in the election.
"We suffered only because of the rebels, they (opposition) need not be happy. We only are forming the government, they are far from being able to do that," he said.
Fadnavis’s statement came minutes after Sena chief Uddhav Thackarey said there was a 50-50 deal with the BJP and it should be clear as to who should be the chief minister.
If the trends continue, the BJP will garner 102 seats while the Sena will win 59.
In 2014, the BJP had won 122 seats in the state and the Sena 63 -- effectively making the Narendra Modi-Amit Shah-led BJP the “big brother” in the alliance.
The traditional alliance between the two has since been stormy, with the Sena repeatedly attacking the BJP on different fronts.
For the NCP too, particularly for Pawar, it was important to become the face of the opposition and ensure that the Congress, without a face of its own, took a backseat.
Meanwhile, apart from being the youngest chief minister of Maharashtra, a record he shares with Pawar, Fadnavis is also the only chief minister after Vasantrao Naik to have completed a full term in office.
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