Some rare warmth was on display between allies Shiv Sena and BJP on Friday, when the state’s new housing policy was announced.
Chief minister Devendra Fadnavis and Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray shared the dais, but did not take potshots at each other. Instead, they each praised the other for bringing out the policy.
Both leaders said the policy was to ensure citizens have access to affordable houses — which they said was the agenda of the current Sena-BJP government.
“I congratulate Devendraji for bringing out such a policy. For the past 15 years, the Sena has been launching agitations, but nothing came of it. Today, people are seeing a positive change,” Thackeray said.
At one point, Sena workers began shouting slogans while housing minister Prakash Mehta was speaking. Thackeray asked them to quiet down.
On his part, Fadnavis said the allies were bound to fulfil the government’s dream of achieving housing for all.
“There are legacy issues but my government has taken decisions. Both Prakash Mehta and his deputy Ravindra Waikar worked hard for the housing policy,” Fadnavis said.
He assured Thackeray the government wanted to extend the cluster revamp scheme to the suburbs.
With the 2017 civic elections only months away, both parties were gearing up to fight them solo.
But the allies seem to be warming up to each other to counter an aggressive Congress- NCP alliance, which has put the BJP on the mat over corruption charges.