BJP, Sena yet to forge ties in Maharashtra

BJP, Sena yet to forge ties in Maharashtra

As the day of the trust vote in the Maharashtra Assembly inches closer, the BJP and Shiv Sena are continuing to blow hot and cold on the terms of their relationship.

Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, the head of the BJP-minority government in the state, on Wednesday refrained from committing to the Shiv Sena and made it clear that he would not expand his council of ministers until after the vote of confidence on November 12.

“First the trust vote and then expansion,” said Fadnavis, who has called for a special three-day session of the state Assembly on November 10. The Maharashtra chief minister said the Shiv Sena’s participation in the government was being discussed appropriately and that a decision on the issue would be announced in Delhi.

The BJP and Shiv Sena had a 25-year alliance which broke due to differences over seat sharing in the run up to the October 15 Assembly elections in Maharashtra.

Reacting to Fadnavis’ statement, Sanjay Raut, executive editor of Shiv Sena’s mouthpiece “Saamana”, asserted that his party was still holding discussions with the BJP. 

The Shiv Sena, however, did not hold back from targetting the BJP over forming a separate state for Vidarbha. “The BJP won handsomely in the Vidarbha region in the recently held Assembly elections, but they should not think they have got the mandate to divide Maharashtra,” Wednesday’s editorial in Saamana read.

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