In a photofinish by Lok Sabha election standards, Sanjay Nirupam defeated former Union minister Ram Naik in the Mumbai North seat by a slender 5,000 votes.
As the counting concluded, Naik made an early exit, saying, "The MNS is solely responsible for my defeat." The MNS being Raj Thackeray's [ Images ] Maharashtra [ Images ] Navnirman Sena, whose candidates won about 100,000 votes or more in every city constituency, effectively snuffing out the Bharatiya Janata Party-Shiv Sena challenge.
Priya Dutt [ Images ] won the Mumbai North Central seat by a whopping 319,352 votes, leaving behind the BJP's Mahesh Jethmalani who got 124,797 votes.
Dutt and Nirupam made a grand exit from the counting booth. Supporters wore Sanjay Nirupam masks and waved the Congress flag.
"I thank everyone who voted for me and I am very happy that I have won this election. Now my only aim is to fulfill the promises I made during my rallies," Nirupam said, heading to the Sai Baba temple in Kandivli, northwest Mumbai, to express his gratitude.
Gurudas Kamat [ Images ] won the Mumbai North West seat by 11,000 votes. The ther victorious candidates were Milind Deora [ Images ] from Mumbai South who won by over 112,000 votes, Eknath Gaikwad from Mumbai South Central and the NCP's Sanjay Patil from Mumbai North East.