The Bhartiya Janata Party on Tuesday made it clear that it plans to emerge as the largest single party in the next assembly election, and claim the post of chief minister. The party floated an idea: to forge the Maharashtra Democratic Alliance, a coalition of parties in the opposition, on the lines of the National Democratic Alliance at the centre.
Newly-appointed state unit chief of the party Devendra Fadnavis unveiled the idea at the party's state executive conference at Shanmukhananda Hall. He said that the ruling Democratic Front government in the state is in power only because opposition parties have no unity. To prove his point, Fadnavis said that parties other than the ruling parties have the electoral support to 68 per cent, as the ruling Congress-NCP had got 32 per cent votes in 2009.
"Our alliance with the Shiv Sena and the Republican Party of India is strong enough to win power in next elections, but one should not undermine the fact that the politics of the combines and alliances is inevitable today. Parties other than those in power should join hands to ensure the ouster of the DF government that has failed on every front. BJP will try to bring them under one banner to ensure the power in the state," he said.
This also means the party is eyeing the chief minister's post in case the alliance wins power. However, senior Sena leader and MP Sanjay Raut said that it is premature to talk about the concepts of MDA and emerging as single largest party. "Let the parties in the NDA come together at the Centre first. They are talking about emerging as the largest party in the state, but they should first take a decision about their leader under whose leadership the elections are to be fought," he said.
BJP Flags deface city
As Devendra Fadnavis, the newly-elected state president of the BJP visited the city on Thursday, thousands of party flags waved en route to the Shanmukhananda hall in Sion.
"Suddenly on Tuesday morning, the city turned orange because of the flags put up on every lane. Every possible space was used by the party," said a Dadar resident. Motorists in Sion were irked as flags on the road obstructed their view.
Citizen groups and activists have strongly opposed defacement practices by political parties. Activist Aftab Siddiqui said, "Such means to advertise or welcome a leader is becoming rampant in the city. The BMC must take disciplinary action against them immediately."