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BMC polls: AIMIM may spring a surprise

Mumbai: Mumbai on Tuesday decided who would rule India’s richest municipal corporation, which dwarfs many states in terms of its astronomical budget.

This election, however, differed from all previous ones, with alliances being broken and a bitter exchange of allegations ensuing among former allies.  The high voting percentage has left political parties wondering what exactly was on the voters’ minds. An estimated 55 per cent cast their vote

The outcome of Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) elections will decide the fate of two leaders — Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray and Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis.

If Mr Thackeray wins, he will tower every other leader in the city; and if the Bharatiya Janata Party falters, Mr Fadnavis’ grip on the state BJP will be undermined.

The Congress and the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) appear to have lost the battle even before it started. While the former’s chances were marred by internal strife, the NCP  decided to focus on rural Maharashtra. There are chances of All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen emerging as a shocker for Congress with it winning more seats than the Samajwadi Party, NCP and, some say, the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena.

The AIMIM is contesting the BMC elections for the first time, and have fielded 59 candidates, predominantly from Muslim dominated areas.

The party is confident of winning around 10 seats, especially in areas of Bandra, Quresh Nagar in Kurla, Nagpada in Byculla, Govandi, Mankhurd, Dongri, and Sewri.

The party has fielded nine non-Muslim candidates, but it’s most prestigious catch has been three time Congress corporator Waqarunnissa Ansari from Bhendi Bazaar.

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