Unhappy with Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis’s statement that no rotational or 50:50 formula was agreed upon with the Shiv Sena, Uddhav Thackery on Tuesday cancelled his party’s meeting with the Bharatiya Janata Party on formation of the next government. “Discussions between BJP-Shiv Sena were scheduled. But if the CM himself is saying that the '50-50 formula' was not discussed then what will we even talk about? On what basis should we talk to them? So Uddhav ji has cancelled today's meeting,” said party leader Sanjay Raut.
The development is likely to worsen the already strained relationship between the two alliance partners in Maharashtra. A senior Sena leader told PTI the meet, scheduled to be held at 4 pm, was cancelled by Thackeray after the CM’s statement on sharing of power. The meeting was to be attended by Union minister Prakash Javadekar and senior Sena leaders.
“Union minister Prakash Javdekar and party leader Bhupendra Yadav were supposed to attend the meeting to start discussions on formation of the next government from the BJP side, while the Sena would have been represented by Subhash Desai and Sanjay Raut,” the Sena leader said.
“Uddhav Thackeray ji has said that we have other options too but we don't want to do the sin of accepting that alternative. Shiv Sena has always done politics of truth, we are not hungry for power,” Raut added.
Shiv Sena has been insisting that the 50:50 formula on sharing of power was ‘agreed upon’ between himself, BJP chief Amit Shah and Fadnavis ahead of the Lok Sabha polls this year. The Sena had demanded a written assurance from the BJP for implementing “equal formula for sharing of power” before holding talks on staking the claim to form the next alliance government in the state.
On Tuesday, the Sena also released an old video clip to “rebut” the CM’s claims on sharing of power in which the latter purportedly talked about equal sharing of posts and responsibilities in the BJP-led state government.
Ever since the BJP’s tally fell in the recently-held assembly polls, results for which were announced on October 24, the Sena raised its pitch for a rotational chief ministership between the two parties for a period of 2.5 years.
Sena MLAs last week demanded that Thackeray’s son Aaditya, a first-time legislator, be made the chief minister. In the elections held for the 288-member House, 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. A resurgent NCP won 54 and the Congress bagged 44 seats.
With Agency Inputs