Hazare keeps Maharashtra in limelight in 2011

Last Updated: Sun, Dec 18, 2011 05:24 hrs

Mumbai: The year's biggest newsmaker Anna Hazare, sweeping of civic polls by the ruling Congress-NCP alliance despite some strain and setback to some key leaders in these elections besides the 'rebellion' of Gopinath Munde dominated Maharashtra's political landscape in 2011.

74-year-old Hazare was the most-talked about Maharashtrian during the year. "I Am Anna Hazare" slogan was likened to the "We Are All Khaled Said" campaign of the Egypt uprising that toppled the Hosni Mobarak regime, and to some, Delhi's Ramlila Maidan resembled Cairo's Tahrir Square.

Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan and Industries Minister Narayan Rane, both from Congress, suffered personal setbacks in municipal council elections, which otherwise saw strong performances by the ruling Congress-NCP combine.

Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan's remark that Congress agreeing to give the key Home portfolio to NCP was a mistake, brought to the fore the underlying unease in state's ruling coalition.

"I think it was a mistake. We should have relooked at it. I don't know of any other coalition government where the portfolios of Home, Finance and Planning are not with the chief minister," he had said.

Chavan's remarks made at a time when Home Minister R R Patil (NCP), who had to quit after the 26/11 terror attacks, was under fire over the July 13 Mumbai blasts, added to the discomfiture of his party's ally.

In June, the appointment of Vikas Mathkari as president of BJP's Pune unit led to a buzz that senior leader Munde, who disfavoured it, was leaving the party.

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