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Maharashtra BJP reads the votes: Article 370 may not have worked in some pockets

While the party feels reforms undertaken in the agriculture sector, primarily the state government’s flagship Jalyukt Shivar project, yielded positive results in the rural belt, its performance in urban areas is being attributed to voters’ rejection of the “national plank” — Article 370 — in some pockets.

Written by Shubhangi Khapre | Mumbai | Updated: October 27, 2019 8:55:52 am
Union Home Minister Amit Shah addressing a gathering on Article 370 at NSE Grounds in Goregaon. (file/Express photo by Prashant Nadkar)

Asserting that the new chief minister will be from the BJP, the state unit of the party has submitted its post-election analysis to the central leadership, examining where it fell short of expectations in numbers and strategy in the October 21 polls.

While the party feels reforms undertaken in the agriculture sector, primarily the state government’s flagship Jalyukt Shivar project, yielded positive results in the rural belt, its performance in urban areas is being attributed to voters’ rejection of the “national plank” — Article 370 — in some pockets.

“The party’s performance was better in rural areas compared to urban areas in the state. Nearly 75 per cent of the 105 seats won are from rural or semi-rural areas of Maharashtra,” a BJP leader said.

However, the party’s performance in urban areas such as Pune, Nashik, Nagpur, Amravati, Kolhapur, Sangli and Satara (with the exception of Mumbai where BJP won 16 of the total 36 seats) is being attributed to voters’ rejection of the Article 370 plank.

A senior BJP leader told The Sunday Express, “The nationalism plank worked well in the Lok Sabha polls, which gave us an absolute mandate. Pushing the Article 370 issue in the Assembly polls in a short span of five months, however, appears to have not worked in our favour.”

The party has convened a meeting of the newly elected MLAs on October 30 to appoint its legislative party leader in Maharashtra.

Sources in the BJP said the newly elected 105 party MLAs were likely to unanimously elect Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis as the BJP legislative party leader, paving the way for his swearing-in next week for a second term.

BJP leader in-charge of Maharashtra, Saroj Pande, on Saturday asserted the BJP’s claim over the chief ministerial post. “The Maharashtra chief minister will be from the BJP,” she said.

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