A day before the trust vote was to be moved by the Bharatiya Janata Party government, the Shiv Sena was still making up its mind to sit in the opposition though it did not get any positive response from the BJP.
After holding a meeting of the party MLAs on Tuesday, the Sena leadership chose not to announce its stand but told legislators to follow the party whip on what stand to be taken in connection with the assembly speaker election and trust vote of the Devendra Fadnavis-led government.
Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray asked party MLAs at the meeting to be prepared to sit in the opposition if there was no reconciliation with the BJP. They were told that the party was not in mood to compromise and it would join the government only if the respectable proposal was put forward.
Meanwhile, CM Devendra Fadnavis called up Uddhav Thackeray to urge him to withdraw the nomination filed his party for the post of speaker. The party filed the nomination of its Parner MLA Vijay Auti as its candidate for the post of assembly speaker on Tuesday.
Thackeray reportedly told Fadnavis that the decision would be taken based on the outcome of the negotiations over power-sharing formula between the parties.
Though Shiv Sena was hopeful of a last minute headway till Wednesday, the BJP’s proposals did not match the Sena’s demands, party sources said. Some Sena leaders claimed that top BJP leaders like finance minister Arun Jaitley were in constant touch with their leaders and that they may arrive at a positive outcome at the last minute. Jaitley was talking to Sena MP Anil Desai till late on Tuesday.
Union minister and BJP leader Rajiv Pratap Rudy’s statement that they were positive about the outcome of the talks with Shiv Sena kept party’s hopes alive.
Party spokesperson Neelam Gorhe said: “The party whip would be issued to the legislators on Wednesday morning. The decision about party stand on the trust vote and the election of the speaker would be taken by Uddhavji by Wednesday morning.”