Mukesh Ambani endorsed Milind Deora loses in Mumbai South
Yet again, Milind Deora of Congress had lost his precious Mumbai South seat to his Shiv Sena rival Arvind Ganpat Sawant. This time around, this former union minister in the 2009 Congress government, was defeated by a wide margin of 1 lakh votes.
This is in spite of high ticket endorsements that Deora had to get this time around. Mukesh Ambani, the country’s richest man and top businessman, who is also a South Mumbai resident had batted for him this time by appealing to Mumbai South's elite voters.
“I believe Milind has in-depth knowledge of social, economic and cultural ecosystem of their South Mumbai constituency,” Ambani said in a video. The chairman of the third largest bank, Uday Kotak too batted for Deora. But this fell short of the Sena-BJP alliance which swept the state.
All of Mumbai's constituencies went the Saffron way as Poonam Mahajan of BJP won over Priya Dutt yet again in Mumbai North Central.
The sitting MP of Mumbai North, Gopal Shetty also defeated Congress' Urmila Matondar by a margin of over 4.6 lakh votes.
Sena's Gajanan Kirtikar and Rahul Ramesh Shewale won Mumbai North West and Mumbai South Central respectively. BJP's Manoj Kotak won the Mumbai North East seat.
This election brought a new hope for Milind Deora, a union minister in the last UPA government, who was a victim of Modi wave. This Congress candidate had hoped to reclaim his Mumbai South seat back from Arvind Sawant, the Shiv Sena candidate, who fought off the upper crest voters who have been bringing in their own to the fold, for decades now.
Mumbai North Central also had interesting candidates. Poonam Mahajan, the daughter of late Telecom Minister Pramod Mahajan, contested against Congress’ Priya Dutt, the daughter of the legendary Sunil Dutt. Like Deora, Dutt too had to concede her sitting seat to Mahajan, after Modi wave washed away her seat prospects to this first-timer, by a massive 1.86 lakh vote margin. Dutt’s loss in Mumbai North Central was one of Congress’ major disappointments for the election.
Priya’s brother Sanjay Dutt whose image is now wiped squeaky clean, thanks to his biopic Sanju, had stepped in to campaign for his sister. This election, Congress employed enough star power to battle the larger-than-life Modi image. Actress turned politician Urmila Matondkar has braved many controversies to get Congress elected from Mumbai North, and take down BJP’s sitting MP Gopal Shetty.
However, BJP had its share of troubles as well. They had to drop the sitting MP Kirit Somaiya from their candidate list after a controversial statement made on Sena leader Uddhav Thackeray. They fielded Manoj Kotak for the Mumbai North East seat after hotheaded Sena party members threatened to campaign against them if Somaiya came to power. Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) has fielded only a single candidate from Mumbai North East, Sanjay Patil, who had lost to Somaiya last time.
Congress’ Sanjay Nirupam from Mumbai North West had contested against the sitting MP, Gajanan Kirtikar of Shiv Sena, to whom he conceded defeat to, last time. Eknath Gaikwad of Congress battled out Shiv Sena’a Rahul Shewale for the Mumbai South Central seat, in the city which has six Lok Sabha seats to offer.