Devendra Fadnavis retained his seat by a margin of around 49,500 votes.
Nagpur: In a reversal of fortunes, Congress, after a severe drubbing in the 2014 polls, regained its lost ground and won 17 seats in the drought-hit Vidarbha region. Its ally, the Nationalist Congress Party, won six out of the 62 seats in the region.
In 2014, riding on the ‘Modi wave’, the BJP had emerged as a dominant force in Vidarbha by winning 44 of the 62 seats — the highest for the party from across different regions of Maharashtra. But the setback this time has seen the party reduced to 28 seats. The Shiv Sena maintained its tally of four this time, too.
Reacting to the impressive show of the Congress in Vidarbha, senior Congress leader Nitin Raut said, “The people of Vidarbha have reposed their faith in Congress. The BJP had to bite dust and their toll claim of crossing 220 proved to be a joke. The Congress-NCP has a bright future.”
Mr Raut, the former Nagpur guardian minister, dethroned sitting Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MLA Dr Milind Mane in Nagpur North constituency.
In Katol, former NCP minister Anil Deshmukh regained his seat defeating BJP’s Charan Singh Thakur, a former Zilla Parishad functionary.
His nephew, Ashish, however, lost to chief minister Devendra Fadnavis in the Nagpur South-West constituency.
Mr Fadnavis retained his seat by a margin of around 49,500 votes.
In Kamptee, the former constituency of energy minister Chandrashek-har Bawankule, the party suffered a humiliating de-feat as former Zilla Parishad president and Congress candidate Suresh Bhoyar routed BJP novice Tekchand Savarkar.
Sakoli in Bhandara district saw neck-and-neck fight, where BJP fielded sitting MLC Parinay Fuke against high-profile Congress leader Nana Patole. Mr Patole, after a bitter contest, won by a margin of 12,000 votes.
In Ramtek, former Shiv Sena MLA-turned-rebel Advocate Ashish Jaiswal defeated sitting BJP MLA Mallikarjun Reddy.