`Issue of graft behind Cong loss in civic polls`

The issue of corruption led to the defeat of Cong in Mumbai Municipal elections, CM Prithviraj Chavan is believed to have told Cong high command.

New Delhi: The issue of corruption and scams
at the national level led to the defeat of Congress in the
Mumbai Municipal Corporation elections, Maharashtra Chief
Minister Prithviraj Chavan is believed to have told the party
high command on Saturday.

Chavan, who had a meeting with party chief Sonia Gandhi,
underlined the fact that the 2G scam, the Commonwealth Games
mess and such other scandals linked the party with corruption
in popular mind, especially among youth, sources said.
The Chief Minister, they said, told the Central
leadership that the land allotment controversy allegedly
involving former Chief Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh too figured
in the mind of a section of the electorate.

With the scams and scandals dominating the media for
the past one year, the young voter who constituted a sizable
lot among the electorate, got especially influenced, party
sources said.

The Congress had undertaken a post-poll survey in the
megapolis and these were among its findings.
Shivsena-BJP-RPI alliance trounced the Congress-NCP
combine in the civic polls which were described as a fight
between the NDA and the UPA by the Chief Minister.

After the polls, the AICC had rejected suggestions of
resignation of the Chief Minister who had strongly advocated
for tieup with NCP to oust BJP-Shivsena from power in Mumbai
Municipal Corporation.

Senior Maharashtra Minister Narayan Rane also had a
seperate meeting with Gandhi.

The sources said Union Ministers Vilasrao Deshmukh and
Rajeev Shukla are almost set to be renominated by the party as
its nominees for the Rajya Sabha biennial elections scheduled
next month. A section in the state unit are opposing a second
term for Shukla contending that ?utsiders` should not be
nominated. Shukla hails from Uttar Pradesh.

PTI

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