Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray has added a dash of spice to the MVA alliance’s blow hot-blow cold relationship, saying politically, he has been against the Shiv Sena’s allies Congress and NCP.
“Politically, I have been against Congress and NCP (Nationalist Congress Party) but this doesn’t mean that I will call their good work in the government wrong. Neither I nor Balasaheb thought this," Thackeray said.
Thackeray’s message comes amid reports of growing dissent among the allies, just days after Maharashtra Congress chief Nana Patole alleged that the Sena and NCP are keeping a watch on his movement.
Patole had said that every morning, the chief minister and the deputy chief minister get a report on his schedules, meetings, agitations and discussions from the Home Department.
While the Sena-NCP rejected his allegations outright, BJP leaders said that Patole’s comments prove that the Congress is “isolated and insulted" in the Maha Vikas Aghadi government
Patole said that ever since the Congress started talking of self-reliance and fighting future polls independently, the ground has shifted form under the feet of the Shiv Sena and the Nationalist Congress Party. “What’s wrong if I talk of building and strengthening the party?" he asked.
“The system is not allowing me to live peacefully. My phone is being tapped. Wherever I go, whatever I speak, a report is sent to the CM, Deputy CM and state Home Minister. Some people are unhappy that the Congress is growing in strength," said Patole.
As his statement created a flutter on social media, Patole back-tracked, blaming sections of the media and the BJP for misinterpreting his words as he was referring to the Intelligence Bureau (IB). “False news is being circulated by the Opposition about me. The MVA government is stable and will continue it full term," Patole declared.
The alliance once again grabbed headlines when there were rumours of the Shiv Sena “cozying up” to the BJP, its erstwhile partner. Sena leader Sanjay Raut had compared the relationship between the parties as that of Bollywood superstar Aamir Khan and his wife Kiran Rao who recently announced their divorce.
“We are not India-Pakistan. Look at Aamir Khan and Kiran Rao, it is like them. Our (Shiv Sena, BJP) political ways are different but the friendship will remain intact,” Raut said, signalling a thaw in ties between the former allies in Maharashtra.
The Bollywood superstar recently announced his divorce but said the couple would “like to begin a new chapter in our lives — no longer as husband and wife, but as co-parents and family for each other”.
Raut’s statement came after former Maharashtra CM Devendra Fadnavis said his party and former ally Shiv Sena are “not enemies" though there are differences of opinions between them.