The Bharatiya Janata Party and the Shiv Sena alliance was set to retain power for a second consecutive term after it secured 161 seats in the 288-member Maharashtra Assembly, as per the Election Commission of India (ECI) figures of the results of 286 constituencies as at midnight, Thursday-Friday.
The BJP had won 105 seats while ally Shiv Sena bagged 56 seats crossing the half-way mark of 144 seats.
The Opposition Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) also put up a magnificent show by winning 54 seats and ally Congress won 44 with a combined tally of 98 seats.
Among the smaller parties and independents, the Bahujan Vikash Aghadi had won three seats, while the All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen, Prahar Janshakti Party and Samajwadi Party have emerged victorious in two seats each.
The Maharashtra Navnirman Sena, Swabhimani Shetkari Party, CPI(M), Rashtriya Samaj Party, Jan Surajya Party and the Krantikari Shetkari Party have bagged one seat each.
Besides, as many as 13 independents were declared victorious across the state.
While the Congress has said it bows before the peoples’ verdict, the NCP has offered support to the Shiv Sena if it was willing to form a government.
Countering all speculation, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis asserted that the next government will be formed by the ‘Maha-Yuti’.
However, the Sena President Uddhav Thackeray virtually staked claim to the post of CM by “reminding” the BJP of its 50:50 power-sharing formula finalized before the Lok Sabha elections.
He said the Sena was ready to discuss it with anybody including BJP President Amit Shah, in a transparent manner, and was in “no hurry” to form the government without discussions with his party leaders.