MUMBAI: The Shiv Sena on Wednesday indirectly helped the All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (MIM) to get its first taste of power in Maharashtra. And the Sena decision to abstain from the election of Deputy Mayor in Malegaon Municipal Corporation helped the MIM candidate to bag the post.
Shiv Sena leader in the Malegaon Corporation Sanjay Dusane, though, denied that his party had helped the MIM to secure power. “We had a right to take any decision on voting. We decided to remain abstain. We will never support the MIM,” he said. The Shiv Sena, which has 11 members, played a crucial role in deciding the choice of the Mayor and Deputy Mayor in the 80 member-strong civic body. The Sena members voted in favour of Tisra Mahaj Party’s Haji Ibrahim and got him elected as Mayor.
The Tisra Mahaj, which has 24 members, won the Mayoral post with the help of the Shiv Sena (11) and MIM (nine) and Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (two). The losing Congress candidate garnered 32 votes.
The MIM’s Sheikh Yunus Isa and Malegaon Vikas Aghadi’s Sunil Gaikwad were the contenders for the post of the Deputy Mayor. The Shiv Sena boycotted the polls as it did not want to vote for Gaikwad due to political rivalry. As a result, Isa got 34 votes, two more than Gaikwad.
Gaikwad had contested the October Assembly elections against the Shiv Sena’s Dadaji Bhuse, a Minister of State in the Devendra Fadnavis Cabinet, from Malegaon.
The MIM did not have any existence in Malegaon before the nine NCP councillors defected to the party in October.
Earlier, the MIM had won 11 seats in Nanded Municipal Corporation election, but never reached so close to the power. The party had also won two Assembly seats in Maharashta.
In the Assembly polls, the MIM had fielded its candidates against the Congress in Mumbai, helping the Shiv Sena win eight seats from here.