Raj Thackeray’s Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) has managed to bag a seat in the Brihanmumbai Electric Supply and Transport (BEST) committee, with help from its arch-rival Samajwadi Party (SP). On Tuesday, MNS leader and corporator from Shivaji Park Prakash Patankar was elected as BEST committee member.
The BEST committee controls the civic body’s transport and electricity supply wing and has 17 members, of which eight members retire at the end of every financial year. A political party needs at least 13 corporators to elect one member to the BEST committee. Since both the MNS and SP have seven corporators each, they formed a group and on the basis of their combined strength of 14, claimed membership of BEST committee, who was from the MNS.
A headcount in the House on Wednesday revealed that the MNS had 7 while SP had 6 members, following which Patankar was declared elected.
Though MNS joining hands with the SP came as a big surprise as these two parties have in the recent past been vehemently against each other.
Last year, SP’s Mumbai unit head Abu Azmi was manhandled by MNS legislators inside the Assembly when he refused to take oath in Marathi.