BJP, Shiv Sena begin wooing their smaller alliance partners

BJP, Shiv Sena begin wooing their smaller alliance partners

After the 25-year-old BJP-Shiv Sena alliance came to an end, both the parties today appealed to their smaller alliance partners to join hands with them for the forthcoming Maharashtra assembly polls.

Ramdas Athawale-led Republican Party of India said here today Shiv Sena President Uddhav Thackeray has "requested" support from it for the assembly polls.

"Uddhav has expressed his disappointment with the BJP for breaking the alliance and said Shiv Sena always wanted to keep the alliance intact. He has requested me to support Shiv Sena for the polls," Athawale told reporters here on the sidelines of his meeting with Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray.

Earlier, Maharashtra BJP president Devendra Fadnavis had told reporters the BJP would fight the Maharashtra assembly polls with smaller allies.

"BJP has worked out a seat-sharing deal with Mahadeo Jankar's Rashtriya Samaj Paksha and Raju Shetty's Swabhimani Shetkari Sanghatana. Our talks with Vinayak Mete of Shiv Sangram are in its final stages and we will also speak to RPI's Ramdas Athawale," Fadnavis had said.

Athawale said he would try once again to patch up the difference between the BJP and the Shiv Sena, but would take a final call about support any party after consulting his party workers.

"This has been a grand alliance (Mahayuti). We cannot simply let it end. I will try to patch up differences between the estranged parties, but if nothing works out, I will meet my party workers tomorrow and take a final call," Athawale said.

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