RAIPUR: The ruling Congress party in Chhattisgarh bounced back winning the posts of Mayor in all ten municipal corporations, after facing a major setback in the 2019 parliamentary polls when the BJP secured victory in nine of the 11 Lok Sabha seats.
The saffron party then got a vote share of 50.45 percent, a sizeable increase from the 33 percent the BJP got in the 2018 Assembly election-winning just 15 of the 90 seats.
The Congress before Lok Sabha elections formed government in the state with a landslide performance winning 68 seats.
The mayoral candidates of Congress party won in all the ten municipal corporations of Chhattisgarh, the last held on Friday in the industrial town of Korba where the Congress leader Ramkishore Prasad with the support of independents, BSP corporators defeated the BJP candidate Ritu Chowrasiya by a single vote in the mayoral contest.
The party earlier has won from Raipur, Rajnandgaon, Jagdalpur, Bilaspur, Durg, Dhamtari, Chirmiri Raigarh and Ambikapur.
“The results are an approval of the Bhupesh Baghel government’s welfare policies”, said the state Congress president Mohan Markam.
Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel congratulating all the Mayors has asked them to focus on issues of the masses and address them.
The Congress leaders who won the Mayoral polls included Hema Deshmukh (Rajnandgaon), Ramsharan Yadav (Bilaspur) and Safira Sahu (Jagdalpur) were elected earlier while Aijaz Dhebar (Raipur), Vijay Dewangan (Dhamtari), Kanchan Jaiswal (Chirmiri), Dhiraj Bakliwal (Durg), Janki Katju (Raigarh) Dr Ajay Tirki (Ambikapur).
The BJP however alleged the Congress government used money power and official machinery in the local body polls. “It will not sustain for long”, asserted the BJP state president Vikram Usendi.
The Congress got an edge over the opposition BJP winning 1,283 corporator posts out of the 2,840 in the 151 urban bodies in the state. The BJP though gave a tough fight and secured victory in 1,131 wards.
The Janta Congress Chhattisgarh (J), the regional outfit floated by the former chief minister Ajit Jogi in June 2016, could manage to win only 36 seats, and 364 independents across the state have emerged victorious.
The elections were held in 151 urban local bodies, including 10 municipal corporations, 38 municipal councils and 103 nagar panchayats. The voter turnout of 78.73 percent was recorded in the polls held on December 21.
The Bhupesh Baghel cabinet had in October last year cleared the proposal on reverting to ballot papers and holding an indirect Mayoral elections in the urban local bodies polls. The Chhattisgarh Municipalities Act was consequently amended.