The tension within the Shiv Sena-BJP alliance is likely to escalate further as the BJP today sought MNS’s support for the biennial elections to the Maharashtra Legislative Council, slated for March 20.
Senior BJP leader Nitin Gadkari’s recent meeting with MNS president Raj Thackeray had created a stir in the political circles, with Shiv Sena registering a strong protest.
Today, state BJP leader Vinod Tawde and Mumbai BJP chief Ashish Shelar met Raj at his residence in Dadar in central Mumbai.
Tawde said, “We met the MNS president to seek his party’s support for the Legislative Council elections. Our two candidates need 58 votes to win, but we are falling short of 12 votes. We have requested him to support BJP.”
The tenure of Tawde, an MLC and the Leader of Opposition in the Upper House, and that of his senior colleague Pandurang Phundkar is ending on April 24. Tawde has expressed his interest in contesting the Assembly elections this time.
“Most likely we will retain the same candidates (Tawde and Phundkar) for the council election. A formal decision in this regard will be taken soon,” a BJP source said.