Home » News » Politics » Maharashtra Power Shift Was A Lengthy Operation, Pawar Architect of 'Unholy' MVA: Mahesh Jethmalani
2-MIN READ

Maharashtra Power Shift Was A Lengthy Operation, Pawar Architect of 'Unholy' MVA: Mahesh Jethmalani

By: Shivani Gupta

CNN-News18

Last Updated: July 01, 2022, 16:27 IST

Mahesh Jethmalani firmed up the legal strategies for the Shiv Sena rebel camp and the BJP. File pic/ANI

Mahesh Jethmalani firmed up the legal strategies for the Shiv Sena rebel camp and the BJP. File pic/ANI

Speaking to News18, the senior lawyer and BJP Rajya Sabha member refuted allegations of the central government using pressure through agencies to engineer the Shiv Sena rebellion

Basking in the aftermath of the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government falling in Maharashtra following a rebellion by Shiv Sena’s Eknath Shinde who is now chief minister, senior lawyer and Bharatiya Janata Party’s Rajya Sabha lawmaker Mahesh Jethmalani revealed that he was part of this “operation” for many months.

Jethmalani, who firmed up the legal strategies for the rebel camp and the BJP, said while speaking exclusively to CNN-News18, “I was really called on board for legal advice in late 2021. This planning had been going on from much before. This had to be a very long-drawn-out operation. All along, Mr Fadnavis was very confident about the success provided it was executed with patience and with the right timing. I remember calling all of his associates saying ‘when are we doing this’?”

The master of timing was always going to be Devendra Fadnavis, he said. “But this was not a BJP-contrived breakup. It was resentment on the part of Shinde. He had a good equation with Fadnavis and he slowly gravitated away. There was no pressure on him because it was an alliance built out of frustration with the existing government, especially on ideological grounds. They realised it was not viable,” said Jethmalani. The upcoming corporation elections would have shown that, he maintained, and that was the key to the timing.

“I know that Mr Fadnavis is a very patient man. And you cannot really have two-thirds, that is 39 out of 54 Shiv Sena MLAs, plus all the independent MLAs supporting the Shiv Sena unless it is a very long game,” Jethmalani said.

The BJP MP also refuted allegations of the central government using pressure through agencies to engineer this rebellion.

“I would just say not to envy the success. It was an alliance (Shinde-Fadnavis) that was organically developed. There were multiple causes for it. Democracy is respecting the will of the people. The then leader of the party hijacked that mandate. The people in Maharashtra were not happy with it. The real architect of this unholy alliance was Sharad Pawar. So it was only a question of time this happened,” said Jethmalani.

Dynastical interests can’t be placed above party interests, he observed. “If you stray too far from your brand (Thackeray), you will pay in politics. Uddhav made a colossal mistake,” he said.

Asked if there can be a rapprochement between the BJP and the Shiv Sena overall, or more specifically between Fadnavis and the Thackerays, Jethmalani indicated it may be too late. “There is a lot of bitterness now, all masterminded by Sharad Pawar. That bitterness has made it difficult for the alliance, but you never know in politics,” he said.

Jethmalani also showered praise on new deputy chief minister Fadnavis, “He is very balanced and mature in his strategies. He has a knack for getting loyalty from people. He is great at man-management,” he said. “So I am not surprised that a lot of people have gravitated towards him.”

Read all the Latest News, Breaking News, watch Top Videos and Live TV here.

first published:July 01, 2022, 16:22 IST
last updated:July 01, 2022, 16:27 IST