24/10/2019 1:11 PM IST

Maharashtra Election Result: Major NCP Defector Udayanraje Bhonsle Trails In Satara Bypoll

The Satara bypoll was necessitated after Bhonsle quit NCP to join the BJP.

Twitter/Udayanraje Bhonsle
Udayanraje Bhonsle addressing a rally. 

The Satara Lok Sabha bypoll in Maharashtra was largely viewed as a ‘prestige battle’ after the BJP fielded Udayanraje Bhonsle, who had quit NCP only last month. The bypoll was necessitated after he joined BJP

At 1.05 pm, Bhonsle was trailing behind NCP’s Shriniwas Patil by nearly 47,000 votes. 

Just a couple of months ago, NCP saw large-scale defections to the BJP and Bhosale’s exit was a big blow to the party. NCP is now leading in 51 assembly seats out of 288. 

Last week, as Huffpost India’s Pavan Dahat pointed out, a photo of NCP chief Sharad Pawar addressing a rally in Satara during heavy rains had gone viral. 

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“The rain god has blessed the NCP for the 21 October election. And with the blessings of the rain god, Satara district will create a miracle in Maharashtra,” he told the gathering, according to News18.

He also accepted the “mistake” of picking Bhonsle as the party candidate in the Lok Sabha elections. “But I am happy that to correct the mistake, every young and old person in Satara is waiting for October 21,” he had said. 

Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Minister Amit Shah addressed rallies in Satara and took aim at the NCP supremo. Modi said Pawar did not contest Lok Sabha polls from Satara as he knew which way the “wind was blowing”.