The much-awaited joint public meeting of Shiv Sena supremo Bal Thackeray and Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi in Mumbai on Sunday would definitely swing the votes in favour of the saffron combine candidates in the February 1 municipal elections in Maharashtra, a senior Sena leader has claimed.
"Thackeray and Modi (of BJP) are both excellent orators, whose views on the increasing terrorist activities in different parts of the state will definitely have an impact on the voters of 10 municipal corporations," Neelam Gorhe, MLC and Shiv Sena spokesperson, told in Pune on Saturday.
Sena and BJP have a pre-poll alliance in eight of the 10 municipal corporations, including Mumbai and Pune.
"We are sure of retaining power in Mumbai, while at other places the saffron alliance would put up a good show," she said and described the problem of dissidence faced by the two parties as "minor".
In Solapur and Amravati municipal bodies, the Sena and BJP are fighting the polls on their own. The Congress and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), partners in the Democratic Front government in Maharashtra and also at the Centre, are pitted against each other in nine of the 10 corporations. They have a seat-sharing arrangement only in Akola.
The Raj Thackeray-led Maharashtra Navnirman Sena, which is contesting the municipal polls for the first time, was not running for power anywhere, she said.
Gorhe, a well-known activist, said the percentage of tickets given by Sena to women candidates in Mumbai was 38. The Sena leader said her party had always stood for gender equality and was giving more opportunities to women.