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Amid deadlock, BJP remains firm on Fadnavis as CM

PUBLISHED ON NOV 09, 2019 01:40 AM IST

New Delhi: Amid a deadlock in the power sharing negotiations between Maharashtra allies, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Shiv Sena, two leaders of the BJP said the party will back chief minister Devendra Fadnavis.

Fadnavis submitted his resignation to Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari in Mumbai on Friday, and was asked to continue as the care-taker chief minister. The term of the present assembly expires on Saturday and BJP-Sena alliance appeared on the brinks following a stalemate over rotation of the chief minister’s post.

“Fadnavis has the complete trust of the BJP leadership. We will not desert him,” a senior BJP leader, privy to internal deliberations, said speaking on condition of anonymity. “Fadnavis was our chief ministerial face in the recent election and there is no point in sacrificing him now.”

Fadnavis is the BJP’s first chief minister in Maharashtra, who has managed to deliver successive victories even in municipal and panchayat elections.

Another BJP office bearer in Delhi said the party leadership was miffed with the Sena’s conduct after the election results were announced. The leader said Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray had made the CM’s post an ‘ego battle’.

On Sena MLAs proposing Union minister Nitin Gadkari as a replacement to Fadnavis, the second leader said, “There is no chance of dropping Fadnavis.”

According to party insiders, the BJP feels the need to support Fadnavis, as he has skirted controversies and delivered taint-free governance in last five years, for fear of bringing an end to his illustrious carrer.

The party is also wary of giving in to the Sena’s demand for the fear of encouraging the ally to become more assertive in the future and prompting other partners of the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) to make similar demands, the insiders said.

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