Lucknow: The Shiv Sena has decided to contest on 25 seats in Uttar Pradesh in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections. The party is also in talks with Om Prakash Rajbhar-led Suheldev Bhartiya Samaj Party (SBSP) for a pre-poll alliance in the state.
Rajbhar, who is a coalition partner in the BJP government in the state, has been voicing his dissent against the BJP and has repeatedly threatened to pull out if his demand of implementing sub-quota for OBCs was not implemented ahead of 2019 Lok Sabha Polls.
Senior Shiv Sena leader, Sanjay Raut while speaking to media in Lucknow expressed disappointment with the BJP, “There is no question of any kind of alliance with BJP in UP for Lok Sabha Polls as BJP had broken its electoral pact with Sena in Maharashtra.”
The Sena’s focus is to combine forces with the SBSP, which has good influence over backward communities, added Raut.
The decision of Shiv Sena to contest in UP in the upcoming 2019 Lok Sabha Polls might create hurdles for its old ally BJP, as the saffron party is already finding ways to take on the recently announced alliance between Samajwadi Party and Bhaujan Samaj Party.
Raut, who was in the state capital for upcoming biopic on Shiv Sena founder Balasaheb Thackeray along with Bollywood actors Nawazuddin Siddiqui and Amrita Rao, said, “Although we are a regional party but we have a national appeal and our strategy will be made accordingly for the upcoming Lok Sabha Polls.”
The senior leader is of the opinion that allies are feeling suffocated in the NDA.
However, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has decided to keep its doors open for an alliance with its bickering ally in Maharashtra.
The chief spokesperson of Maharashtra BJP, Madhav Bhandari, while speaking exclusively to CNN-News18 had said, “We have fought the past Lok Sabha elections together. The situation hasn't changed.”
Bhandari, however, refused to answer questions on whether BJP was prepared to fight the Lok Sabha elections single-handedly.