Mumbai: Shiv Sena's Trupti Sawant Wednesday won the Bandra (East) assembly constituency, defeating Congress stalwart and former Maharashtra Chief Minister Narayan Rane and All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (MIM) candidate Siraj Rehbar Khan by over 19,000 votes.
[Newly elected Shiv Sena MLA Trupti Sawant (extreme right) with Sena Chief Uddhav Thackeray and Rashmi Thackeray.]
According to the election commission officials, after the final vote count, Trupti Sawant bagged 52,711 votes ahead of Rane's 33,703 and Rehbar Siraj Khan's 15,050 votes. Sena's Trupti was leading in the election since first round, and consolidated the lead with every round.
The result was crucial — both for the city and state politics — as it was to decide the fate of two parties involved – Congress and All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (MIM). For the Sena, the victory is more of a matter of pride.
Narayan Rane, along with senior Congress leaders, and MIM Chief Asaduddin Owaisi and his younger brother Akbaruddin Owaisi left no stone unturned to woo the voters. They however failed in their mission.
Narayan Rane had lost the last assembly election from his home constituency, and was trying hard for an entry into the state legislative assembly.
In the 2014 assembly polls, Siraj Rehbar Khan had managed to get the third largest number of votes after the Sena and BJP. The MIM, contesting the state election for the first time, had won two seats.
On the other hand, for Uddhav Thackeray, maintaining a hold in the constituency was a prestige issue as it is being held in the Sena’s backyard. Matoshree, the residence of the Thackerays, falls in this constituency.
According to reports, around 30,000 Muslims cast their votes this bypoll, while Maharashtrian and North Indians roughly accounted for 73,000 of the total 1,03,003 valid votes.
While the Sena rejoiced the low turnout in Muslim-dominated areas, the Congress camp had claimed it has received substantial number of votes from Maharashtrian and North Indians as well. The election result however proved them wrong.