BJP may edge out NCP in Pune civic polls

Pune, Feb 23 (IANS) In what could be a huge setback to the Pawar family, the Bharatiya Janata Party raced towards victory in Pune Municipal Corporation elections by notching comfortable leads in 65 of the 162 wards, pushing the ruling Nationalist Congress Party to a distant second at 32 here on Thursday.

The Shiv Sena was on way to registering victories in eight wards followed by the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena in five and the Congress at the fag-end with leads in just two wards in the state’s cultural and IT capital.

The contest was close even in neighbouring Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation with the ruling NCP leading in 27 and the BJP lugging close behind with leads in 21 wards.

The Shiv Sena was on way to retain control over the Thane Municipal by leading in 34 and BJP in 10 of the city corporation’s 131 seats.

Nagpur too was going the BJP way with the party leading in 70 of the civic body’s 151 seats. The Congress led in 20, and the NCP and the Shiv Sena in one seat each.

In Nashik, the BJP appeared on way to win the civic polls, leading in 32 of the 112 seats. The Shiv Sena at 10 and the ruling Maharashtra Navnirman Sena were relegated to just three seats’ lead.

The BJP was faring well in Ulhasnagar, Amravati and Solapur municipal corporations as the counting of votes cast in the civic polls continued.