The BJP swept away the panchayat and municipal elections in Gujarat, dealing a heavy blow to Congress. The party is expected to win most of the 31 district panchayats, 81 municipalities and 231 taluka panchayats that went to the polls on Sunday.

According to the results announced until 5:30 p.m., the party won 771 seats in the panchayat districts, 2,027 in the municipalities and 3,236 in the taluka panchayats while the opposition party’s tally was 164, 375 and 1,201 respectively.

Congress has lost miserably in its traditional strongholds in central Gujarat, the tribal belt of southern and northern Gujarat, and the Patidar-dominated region of Saurashtra where it last swept.

Even in the home district of State Party Head Amit Chavda and PLC Chief Paresh Dhanani, he was wiped out.

The ruling party had already won the six municipal corporations in the first phase on February 21.

After the dismal performance, Mr. Chavda and the leader of the Legislative Party of Congress (CLP), Paresh Dhanani, resigned from their positions. According to party sources, their resignations have been accepted by the high command and replacements will be announced in the next 2-3 weeks.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Union Interior Minister Amit Shah and Chief Minister of Gujarat Vijay Rupani thanked the people for the party’s victory.

“The results of the district nagar palika, taluka and panchayat polls across Gujarat give a clear message: Gujarat strongly adheres to the BJP development and good governance agenda. I salute the people of Gujarat for their unwavering faith and affection towards the BJP, ”the prime minister said on Twitter.

Armed with the results, Rupani said the local elections laid the groundwork for the BJP to win in next year’s Assembly elections.

“The BJP will win the assembly elections next year and the people of Gujarat do not even consider Congress to be an opposition party,” the chief minister told workers at party headquarters.

By 2015, Congress won the majority of district panchayats and taluka.

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