No Plans to Join Shiv Sena, Says Fadnavis After Meeting with Sanjay Raut Gets Rumour Mills Going
Devendra Fadnavis and Sanjay Raut.
A meeting between Shiv Sena’s Sanjay Raut and former Maharashtra CM Devendra Fadnavis on Saturday has led to speculations in the political circles, especially at a time when the two parties are bitter in public over a range of issues. The meeting took place at a luxury hotel in the western suburbs of Mumbai.
However, Fadnavis on Sunday asserted that the BJP has no intention of joining hands with the Shiv Sena or to bring down the Uddhav Thackeray-led state government. Fadnavis claimed that the people of the state are "unhappy" with the performance of the Shiv Sena-led Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government and it "would collapse due to its own inactions".
The senior BJP leader also said his meeting with Sanjay Raut was regarding an interview for the Sena mouthpiece 'Saamana'. "We have no intention of joining hands with the Shiv Sena or to bring down the government. When it falls on its own, we will see," Fadnavis added.
Sanjay Raut confirming the meeting said that it was an interview for the Shiv Sena’s mouthpiece 'Saamana', which is headed by Raut, NDTV reported.
"Devendra Fadnavis is not our enemy. We have worked with him. I met Fadnavis for his interview for Saamna. This was a pre-decided meeting. Even Uddhav Thackeray was aware of this," Raut said after the meeting.
The Shiv Sena and the BJP have recently locked their homes on a range of issues including the demolition of Kangana Ranaut’s office by the BMC and the Sushant Singh Rajput Case.
“Is it a crime to meet Fadnavis, who is a former chief minister and now the Opposition leader in the state Assembly? We have ideological differences but we are not enemies," Raut added.
Raut reportedly said that he had interviewed NCP leader Sharad Pawar, and had announced taking interviews with Fadnavis, Rahul Gandhi, and Home Minister Amit Shah.
The meeting could be significant due to the heat over Sushant Singh Rajput’s case and the bitter relationship of the BJP with CM Uddhav Thackeray. While others speculate that it is a message of the Sena allies- Congress and the NCP, that Sena has good relations with the BJP.