A day after he took over as the state BJP president, Devendra Fadnavis faced the ire of his ally Shiv Sena over his remark of bringing all opposition parties together to fight against the ruling Congress-NCP alliance.
In his editorial in the Sena mouthpiece Saamna, party president Uddhav Thackeray questioned this.
“Fadnavis should concentrate on strengthening the Sena-BJP-RPI alliance and this will automatically make the opposition strong. He should concentrate on the existing alliance instead of running after unknown forces," Thackeray said.
It was evident that the reason for Sena’s displeasure was Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS).
Thackeray reminded Fadnavis that such unity attempts tried by BJP leaders such as Nitin Gadkari and Gopinath Munde had failed.
"It was like banging the head against the wall," he said.
According to Sena leaders, Uddhav was upset as the BJP had been trying to bring MNS on board although the Sena had expressed its displeasure over it.
"When Uddhavji extended an olive branch, Raj arrogantly said he would come to power on his own. Now why should we ally with him," asked a Sena leader.
In the editorial, Uddhav also took potshots at BJP saying the appointment of Fadnavis was delayed because of factionalism in the party. BJP leaders were upset by the criticism.
"Both Sena and MNS share the same vote bank and we experienced in 2009 how we lost power due to the split in votes. Fadnavis realises this and, hence, he wants unity," said a BJP leader who requested anonymity.