Surveys showed anti-incumbency against some Maharashtra MPs: BJP leader
The BJP-Shiv Sena combine, which had set a target of winning 45 out of 48 Maharashtra Lok Sabha seats in the just concluded general polls, was looking at severe anti-incumbency against at least 7-8 MPs of the former and a few from the Sena, a senior BJP functionary said on Sunday. The combine won 41 seats, comprising 23 to the BJP and 18 to the Sena, but saw some major setbacks, including the defeat of Union minister of state for home and senior BJP leader Hansraj Ahir in Chandrapur. The Shiv Sena’s Anant Geete, a minister of state in the Narendra Modi government, too lost the polls from Raigad.
“Ahir (from Chandrapur) and Ashok Nete from Gadchiroli-Chimur were two MPs from Vidarbha against whom internal surveys found strong anti-incumbency,” he said. “But a Union minister opposed the change and their names were finalised for the Lok Sabha polls,” the functionary went on to claim. “It is evident that despite division of votes (with the VBA cornering a large number of votes), Ahir could not be saved and we lost the seat (to Congress’ Suresh Dhanorkar). Otherwise, the Congress would have drawn a blank in Maharashtra,” he said.