Forthcoming Mayoral polls in Maharashtra might throw up some interesting scenarios in view of changing relations between traditional rivals Shiv Sena and the Congress-NCP combine who could team up to deny the BJP a chance to retain power in at least some civic bodies. While in some municipal corporations, the Congress and the NCP may gain an upper-hand with the Sena's support, in others the BJP enjoys a clear majority. The mayoral elections will be held on November 22.
The BJP is likely to retain key civic bodies like Nagpur, Pune, Pimpri Chinchwad, Latur, Sangli Miraj Kupwad, Dhule, Navi Mumbai and Nashik where the party is in a comfortable position. New political equations are emerging in Maharashtra in the wake of the Sena falling out with its oldest ally, the
BJP, after the October 21 assembly elections over sharing of the CM's post.
The Sena is trying to build bridges with its traditional opponents, the Congress and the NCP, a development that will redefine the contours of state politics.
However, the shaping of likely political permutations and combinations depends largely on how the three parties proceed in in their talks on formation of a government at the state level, political observers said on Wednesday.
On Tuesday, NCP's Surmanjiri Latkar became new Mayor of the Kolhapur Municipal Corporation while Sanjay Mohite of the Congress was elected as Deputy Mayor. Four corporators of the Sena had remained absent during polling.
In the 122-Nashik Municipal Corporation (NMC), the ruling BJP has 65 corporators, followed by the Shiv Sena (34), the NCP and the Congress (6 each), the MNS (5), Independents (3) and the RPI-A (1). To avoid any risk of horse-trading, all the parties have moved their corporators out of the city to different locations.
The effective strength of the NMC became 120 after two corporators got elected as MLAs. A speculation that the Sena might join hands with the Congress and the NCP to snatch Mayor's post from the BJP is doing rounds in local political circles. In that scenario, the role of the MNS is likely to become crucial. In 113-member Aurangabad Municipal Corporation, the Mayor's post is with the Sena which has 29 corporators while the BJP has 22 members, the AIMIM (25), the Congress (8), the NCP (4), and others (24).
In 122-member Kalyan-Dombivali Municipal Corporation (KDMC) in Thane district, the ruling Sena (53 corporators) will need additional support to retain power, given that the BJP has 43 corporators.
The Congress and the NCP have 6 corporators between them, the MNS (9), Independents (9) and Others (2). The Congress is expected to retain the mayor's post in the 90-member Bhiwandi Nizampur City Municipal Corporation (BNCMC) where it has 47 corporators.