Amid a tussle between the BJP and the Shiv Sena for the chief minister’s seat in Maharashtra, BJP’s Devendra Fadnavis and senior Shiv Sena leader Diwakar Raote on Monday (October 28) held separate meetings with Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari over forming the next state government, reports said.
A Raj Bhawan official, however, said the meetings were “courtesy calls” by the two leaders.
Fadnavis who tweeted photos of his meeting with Koshyari, said he has apprised the governor on the current situation.
— Devendra Fadnavis (@Dev_Fadnavis) October 28, 2019
Raote also met Koshyari, the official told PTI.
A meeting is expected to take place between Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray, state BJP president Chandrakant Patil, Fadnavis and BJP leader Amit Shah to sort out the issue.
Post the Assembly elections on October 21, BJP’s ally Shiv Sena, asked for “equal sharing” of power, when the former’s seat tally slumped compared to its performance in 2014. On Saturday, the Sena demanded a written assurance from the BJP for implementing “equal formula for sharing of power” before holding talks on staking the claim to form the next alliance government in the state. Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray also reminded the BJP of the 50:50 formula “agreed upon” between himself, BJP president Amit Shah and Fadnavis ahead of the 2019 Lok Sabha polls.
The Sena has proposed that a chief minister each from the two parties split the five-year term. Many have pitched the name of Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray’s son Aaditya to be the chief minister for two-and-a-half years.
Adding more drama to the internal conflict between the two allies, Sena mouthpiece Saamana in an editorial on Monday took a swipe at the saffron party over the “economic slowdown” in the country. Borrowing the iconic dialogue from blockbuster Hindi movie Sholay – Itna sannata kyu hai bhai? (why is there so much silence) -, the editorial sought to know why there was a “silence” in markets on the occasion of Diwali and wondered if worse days were ahead.
In the film, the dialogue was mouthed by veteran actor late AK Hangal in an emotional scene where silent villagers look on while a horse carries the body of his son killed by dacoit Gabbar Singh, portrayed by Amjad Khan. The Sena used the famous dialogue to raise questions over what it termed as the “gloomy” picture of the economy and blamed the government’s decisions of demonetisation and “faulty implementation” of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) for the present situation in the country.
In the recently concluded state polls to the 288-member Assembly, the BJP won 105 seats, a loss of 17 seats compared to its 2014 tally. The Sena’s tally also came down to 56 seats from 63 in 2014. A resurgent NCP won 54 and the Congress bagged 44 seats.
(With inputs from agencies)