10:50 am - Tuesday September 25, 2018

No decision yet on supporting BJP govt in Maharashtra: Shiv Sena

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Mumbai: The Shiv Sena on Monday said that it has not taken any final decision as yet with regard to lending support to a BJP government in Maharashtra.

Party spokesperson Sanjay Raut said at a press conference that the party is yet to take a decision on whether to join the BJP in forming government in the state.

“We will announce our decision at the right time,” Raut added.The remarks came amid reports this morning that the two parties had agreed to form a coalition government in Maharashtra.sources, senior state leaders of the two parties met here this morning and at the meeting, Shiv Sena agreed to lend support to the BJP government.

Sources said details of the government formation are being worked out and a formal announcement could be made later today.Raut, meanwhile, said that party chief Uddhav Thackeray met all elected Shiv Sena MLAs at the Sena Bhawan this afternoon. During the meeting, the party expressed gratitude towards the people of Maharashtra who voted for the Shiv Sena, he added.

He informed that all the MLAs today elected Uddhav as their legislature party leader.

Also today, Home Minister Rajnath Singh and senior BJP leader JP Nadda postponed their Mumbai visit till tomorrow. The duo were scheduled to visit Mumbai today to help choose the leader of the BJP legislature party in Maharashtra.

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They were expected to meet Uddhav as well and discuss post-poll alliance.

BJP president Amit Shah and Union Minister Nitin Gadkari, who was said to be among the candidates for the CM’s post, also met today to discuss the situation in Maharashtra.

Gadkari meanwhile reiterated that he was not in the race for Maharashtra CM.

The NCP, which won 41 seats, had yesterday decided to unilaterally lend outside support to a BJP government in the state. But the BJP is not keen on taking outside support.

Following NCP’s offer, the Shiv Sena had yesterday taken the initiative to put the pre-poll acrimony behind and look towards the future with the BJP.

As per reports, Uddhav spoke to Amit Shah over phone last evening. The duo were also joined by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, against whom Uddhav and his party mouthpiece ‘Saamna’ had hit out in the run-up to elections.

While there was no specific post-poll alliance talk during the 10-minute long conversation, the leaders of the two parties did agree to ‘move forward’.

The BJP won 122 seats while the Shiv Sena managed 63 in an election that saw the two parties’ 25-year-old friendship end over a few seats.

But with the results failing to give any party a clear majority, it had become necessary for the BJP to forge an alliance with either Shiv Sena or accept the NCP’s offer of outside support.

And sources say, with Shiv Sena being a ‘natural ally’ BJP considered it wise to go with the erstwhile partner than the NCP.

BJP president Amit Shah had yesterday said at a post-results press conference that it was the Shiv Sena which had ended the alliance, not the BJP.

Uddhav is reported to have also held talks with BJP frontrunner for CM Devendra Fadnavis and senior party leader Om Mathur yesterday.

The Sena is reported to be okay with getting the deputy chief minister’s post, after the BJP made it clear in no uncertain terms that they will neither give up the CM’s post nor agree to rotational CM policy.

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