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Uddhav Thackeray to Begin Drought Tour on Nov 3 as Sena Refuses to Blink in Staring Contest With BJP

The move comes a day after the party asked Maharashtra Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari to declare a ‘wet drought’ in the state owing to unseasonal rain in various parts.

News18.com

Updated:November 1, 2019, 9:42 AM IST
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Uddhav Thackeray to Begin Drought Tour on Nov 3 as Sena Refuses to Blink in Staring Contest With BJP
File photo of Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray.

Mumbai: Amid a bitter tussle for power sharing with the BJP in Maharashtra, Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray will embark on a drought tour on November 3 and visit Aurangabad.

The move comes a day after the party asked Maharashtra Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari to declare a ‘wet drought’ in the state owing to unseasonal rain in various parts. Heavy post-monsoon showers in various areas in Maharashtra have prompted this demand, Sena leader Aaditya Thackeray had told reporters after meeting Koshyari at Raj Bhavan on Thursday.

Uddhav’s tour comes amid a protracted struggle with the BJP in the state for ‘50-50’ power sharing, with the senior Thackeray telling his leaders that he was in no hurry to form the government. Uddhav has insisted that the chief ministership be rotated, a demand rejected by the BJP, which said no such formula was agreed upon before elections.

The BJP has 105 MLAs in the 288-seat Maharashtra assembly, a loss of 17 seats compared to its 2014 tally. The Sena's tally also came down to 56 seats from 63 in 2014. A resurgent NCP won 54 and the Congress bagged 44 seats.

The poll result has emboldened the Sena, with senior leader Sanjay Raut calling on NCP’s Sharad Pawar on Thursday. The visit raised eyebrows in political circles and was seen as the Uddhav Thackeray-led party trying to arm-twist the BJP by sending feelers to the opposition players.

The Sena on Thursday once again indicated it had not given up its claim to the post of chief minister, saying that equal sharing of power must mean sharing of the top post as well. Adopting a harsh tone, it accused the BJP of enacting a "second act" of the "use and throw" policy while dealing with its ally.

Raut, however, dismissed rumours of an alternative arrangement in the state. “It isn't unusual for me to meet Mr Pawar. I meet him often. We discussed the current political scenario in the state, among other things,” said Raut, who had also met Pawar on the day of results.

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