A reconciliation of sorts between the erstwhile allies in Maharashtra, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Shiv Sena, now seems possible.
For, BJP president Amit Shah on Saturday hinted that both the parties have kept windows open for talks on power-sharing. “The decision on the Shiv Sena will be taken after deliberations with our local state unit.
Things will get clear in some time,” said Shah, in Aurangabad, avoiding giving direct answer on the Nationalist Congress Party’s (NCP) support to their government.
A state Cabinet expansion is expected to take place around November 20. The final decision will be known when the state winter Assembly session starts on December 8.
HT had earlier reported how the Sena leaders are still talking to the BJP, and despite bagging the post of the leader of Opposition, are willing to jump ship if they manage to strike a power-sharing deal.
Sena leaders are looking at this development positively, and hope the alliance will be considered in new light. “Uddhavji is on a break and will be back on late Balasaheb’s death anniversary on Monday. We are hoping things get back on track. Development in talks, if any, will move forward only from Monday,” a senior Sena leader said.
In the past fortnight, there have been dramatic developments between the two parties. First, the Sena came up with a proposal asking for the deputy chief minister’s post, which the BJP denied.
Now, they want 10-12 ministries, of which three should be important, such as home, revenue and finance. The BJP did not commit anything to the Sena, on the contrary, asked them to first participate in the trust vote in its favour, and then discuss power-sharing.
Shiv Sena retaliated by staying away from the union Cabinet expansion, and calling back MP Anil Desai, who was to be sworn in as minister, from the airport.
Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray even questioned the moral stance of the BJP taking help from the NCP, which it had vociferously opposed in the political campaign ahead of the Assembly elections.