इंडियन आवाज़     22 Feb 2024 01:58:48      انڈین آواز
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Gujarat local polls: Setback for BJP, Congress upbeat

AMN /

AHMEDABAD: The ruling BJP in Gujarat has suffered a major jolt in the local panchayats polls as Congress won 21 of 31 district panchayats, making an impressive return in state.

Congress on Wendesday made an impressive comeback in rural areas of the state, while the ruling BJP retained its hold on urban centres. the ruling BJP has managed to retain its urban bastions by winning all the six municipal corporations, albeit with reduced majority and also around 40 of the 56 municipalities in semi-urban towns.

The six municipal corporations BJP has retained are: Ahmedabad, Rajkot, Surat, Vadodara, Jamnagar and Bhavnagar. However, in rural areas adjoining these cities, the BJP has suffered as it lost district panchayats of Ahmedabad, Rajkot, Vadodara and Jamnagar, Mehsana and Junagadh.

Native district of the Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Gujarat Chief Minister Anandiben Patel, Mehsana District panchayat and municipality both have gone to the Congress, suggesting that the Patidar agitation has affected the BJP in rural areas of the Patidar dominated pockets.

Interestingly, the results have thrown a clear division in rural and urban areas in the State. In rural pockets, the BJP faced strong anti-incumbency factor and price rise, distressed farm sector due to back to back semi droughts last year and current year and also vacuum in the BJP leadership as the party has no strong leader representing the rural areas as top leaders like Anandiben Patel, Amit Shah and top ministers in the Cabinet are urban faces.

In Saurashtra region, the BJP could win one of the 10 district panchayats while in North Gujarat, another strong bastion of the BJP, the BJP lost Mehsana, Patan and Sabarkantha districts while Congress has retained Gandhinagar.

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