Giving a crushing blow to the Congress, the Bharatiya Janata Party won 35 of the total 51 seats in the Junagarh Municipal Corporation. The Congress managed to win only 15 seats though the party had won the Junagarh Lok Sabha election in May 2004. One seat went to an independent candidate. Junagarh MLA, Shri Mahendra Mashru will now be the first mayor of the city.
The party also bagged the Maninagar seat of Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation where a by-election was held recently.
Sources in the BJP said that the clean image of Shri Mashru helped the BJP to win the JMC elections. ?BJP'scall of providing corruption-free and development-oriented rule in the JMC has got a good response from the people,? Rajendrasinh Rana, the state BJP president said.
Big win in Junagarh civic poll
BJP panel of three candidates swept 10 wards out of 17 in the elections. BJP leader Satish Captain won and Congress candidate Girish Kotecha, who was projected as mayor by the Congress, also won. There were as many as 71 candidates of different parties including BSP and Independents in the fray.
Jasu Barad, Junagarh Congress MP, who played a key role in this election, said the results were ?unexpected and shocking?. ?Independents and non-BJP candidates too have a role in Congress? defeat?, he said. ?In civic elections, local equations and issues are vital.?
The first ever election to the civic body in Junagarh also witnessed a large turnout of 55 per cent of voters. It may be noted here that the Junagarh Municipal Corporation was constituted on August 15 last year. The by-election in Maninagar ward of Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation too came as a shot in the arm for BJP. The victorious candidate has been Ramesh Patel.