Ahmedabad: The political developments in neighbouring Maharashtra have had a trickle down effect in Gujarat with both the ruling BJP and the Congress opposition going into revamp mode.
Though the process was triggered off in Gujarat by the by-election results in which underdog Congress came from behind to bag three of the total six seats and narrowly missed a fourth one, the process has gained urgency when the party found itself outwitted and outclassed in government formation in Maharashtra despite bagging the highest number of states.
Gujarat is the home state of both Prime Minister Narendra Modi and home minister and BJP chief Amit Shah. Both had been assured by Chief Minister Vijay Rupani and state party chief Jitu Vaghani of a clean sweep. The Gujarat results, which came alongside Maharashtra and Haryana, proved a shocker.
Four of the six seats were vacancies created when sitting BJP legislators were elected as MPs, while two Congress legislators, Alpesh Thakore and Dhavalsinh Zala, quit to join the BJP and were promptly given tickets. Both were defeated.
In fact, the ruling party had pulled out all stops and had boasted of repeating its Lok Sabha performance in the state by bagging all the six seats. Congress, retained two of its own, bagged a third (Tharad) where youth Congress leader Gulabsinh Rajput won and narrowly missed a fourth seat. In the Amraiwadi constituency of Ahmedabad, BJP received the fright of a lifetime and managed to forge ahead only in the last round.
The state party and government faced the music for the dismal outcome in the Gujarat by-elections. Both, Modi and Shah, gave a piece of their mind to party members.
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The oath-taking ceremony of the newly-elected MLAs started earlier in the day with Pro Tem Speaker Kalidas N. Kolambkar administering their oaths inside the Vidhan Bhavan.