Mocking the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena’s (MNS) unconditional offer to the Shiv Sena for a pre-poll tie-up for the benefit of the city, Shiv Sena leaders circulated messages on social media that if the MNS cares so much for Mumbai’s development it should merge with the Shiv Sena.
In a message circulated by Shiv Sena leaders on WhatsApp, the party cadre said the MNS’ time has come and gone, and the public can clearly see that its offer for an alliance to the Shiv Sena was more to save its own face than care for the city and the Marathi population. Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray slammed the door on any possible tie-up with MNS, led by his estranged cousin Raj Thackeray, by even denying the knowledge of any such offer.
“MNS leader Bala Nangaonkar is saying that the party sent a proposal to the Shiv Sena for an unconditional tie-up in the benefit of the city.But Mumbaiites are not stupid enough to not know if the proposal is in the benefit of the city or to prevent the MNS’ engine from derailing. If you wanted Mumbai’s development, why did you leave the Shiv Sena and establish the MNS in the first place? Now merge the MNS with Shiv Sena and start working towards Mumbai’s development with enthusiasm,” the WhatsApp message said.
In the message, Sena leaders also said MNS chief was earlier looking for a possible tie-up with the BJP, as his own party’s fortunes are dwindling with massive electoral defeats in the Lok Sabha and assembly elections, and with over 150 defections.
Nandgaonkar had tried to put across a proposal from the party for a tie-up with the Shiv Sena for the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) polls, saying it was to avoid division of Marathi votes and prevent the BJP from getting an upper hand. As per the proposal, MNS said it will not field any candidates in wards where the Shiv Sena is strong, while the Sena will leave out seats where MNS already has sitting corporators.