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Amid Brinkmanship Over Power-sharing Pact, Sena-BJP Meet Maharashtra Governor Separately

As the BJP's tally went down in the state assembly elections held last week compared to its 2014 performance, its ally Shiv Sena's chief Uddhav Thackeray raised a pitch for 'equal sharing' of power.

News18.com

Updated:October 28, 2019, 11:40 AM IST
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Amid Brinkmanship Over Power-sharing Pact, Sena-BJP Meet Maharashtra Governor Separately
File photo of Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray and Maharashtra CM Devendra Fadnavis. (PTI)

Mumbai: The power-sharing struggle between the BJP and its Maharashtra ally Shiv Sena took yet another turn on Monday when both the parties called on Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari separately, though both termed it a “courtesy call” to extend Diwali greetings.

After meeting the Governor, Shiv Sena leader Diwakar Raote denied that the move was political and added that he had been calling on Koshyari every year since 1993. “There is no question of discussing politics with him today,” he said.

This was followed by Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis’ visit, with a close aide calling it a meeting to wish him on the occasion of Diwali.

As the BJP's tally went down in the state assembly elections held last week compared to its 2014 performance, its ally Shiv Sena's chief Uddhav Thackeray raised a pitch for "equal sharing" of power.

Thackeray reminded the BJP of the 50:50 formula "agreed upon" between himself, BJP president Amit Shah and Fadnavis ahead of the 2019 Lok Sabha polls.

"I contested less number of seats for Lok Sabha and Assembly elections. I cannot accommodate the BJP every time. I want to remind the BJP about the formula which was worked out in the presence of Amit Shah," Thackeray had said.

On Saturday, the Sena demanded a written assurance from the BJP that it will implement the formula for equal sharing of power. Thackeray had told MLAs of his party that though "other options" were open for him, he didn't want to explore them given that the alliance of the BJP and the Sena is bound by the "Hindutva ideology."

To add to the unease, newly-elected MLAs of Shiv Sena demanded that Aaditya Thackeray be made the chief minister in the next government.

In the just concluded state polls to 288-member Assembly, the BJP won 105 seats, a loss of 17 seats compared to its 2014 tally. The Sena's tally also came down to 56 seats from 63 in 2014.

The verdict came as a shocker for the BJP which had set itself a higher target to secure the absolute majority on its own. The changed scenario has emboldened the Sena which knows well that it is in a position to call shots and endorse Aaditya as the CM face. Aaditya, 29, became the first Thackeray since the party was founded in 1960s to enter the poll fray and win. He won from Worli seat in Mumbai, a Sena pocketborough.

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