Political parties typically align with anyone that allows them to remain in power or retain power. When they align with opposition they give excuse of common minimum program or saving the trouble for citizens from casting another vote. Many a times archrivals become fellow party workers, politics knows no morals. They just aim to retain power by all means. The regional parties are always seen hopping at one to another. One very evident example is Shiv Sena, which is openly supporting Congress and Rahul Gandhi. Post an Assembly election to Maharashtra, Uddhav was approached by Congress to form government while NCP was kept in dark. NCP denied supporting such coalition and very conveniently supported BJP. In the meantime Shiv Sena faced internal revolt due to which Uddhav had no option except to join the BJP government while the demand for Dy. CM by Sena was summarily rejected is in public domain.
Uddhav is in crossroads with two options. It is true that Shiv Sena is openly supporting Congress whom they were alleging as following appeasement of minorities and is against Hindus. Since 2014, Uddhav and Sanjay Raut developed a blind hate for BJP with whom they are napping for more than 25 years.
Surprisingly neither BJP prod them away or Shiv Sena pulling its support. Both are still in coalition but behave like sworn enemies. They just bark but have no guts to move out of NDA. The BJP victory in Gujarat has been dismissed entirely by its fractious ally, which has issued fulsome praise for the performance of the Congress and its chief Rahul Gandhi. The drop in the BJP figures, Sena said, was an indication of Gujarat’s disappointment with the BJP and its development model. The nail-biting counting session on Monday eventually saw the BJP win 99 seats in the 182-member assembly — 16 less than their figure in 2012. The Congress gained 19 seats to reach 80. Sena has made its change of stance on Rahul Gandhi clear. It had said the Gujarat campaign saw him emerge as a leader in his own right and criticised the BJP for failing to acknowledge it. On the morning of counting, an editorial in Saamna, the Sena mouthpiece had heaped praise on the 47-year-old, who took charge of the Congress from his mother Sonia Gandhi two days ago.
Saamna editorial mentioned that when the faces of bigwigs (in the BJP) were turning grey due to fear of defeat, Rahul Gandhi was in the poll arena without bothering about the result. It is this confidence that will take Rahul forward. BJP victory was a “foregone conclusion” given its 22 years of rule in the state, the use of money power and deployment of 14 Chief Ministers for the campaign. But the party has not won the victory it expected. The Gujarat results happened to be “none of the dreams BJP showed the state and the country”. The Sena, which had been at odds with the BJP since forging afresh alliance after the Maharashtra assembly elections of 2014, has recently spoken of pulling out. Elections will have to be held within a year, Aaditya Thackeray, the son of party chief Uddhav Thackeray has said. The Sena boss’s meetings with NCP chief Sharad Pawar and Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee have already triggered speculations of a political realignment. There are chances of Mahagathbandhan (mega coalition) like Bihar.
Now for their jealousy, that BJP has grown more powerful than their own party is ready to sacrifice its ideology and what it stood for, to align with its sworn enemy Congress in its hatred towards BJP. This clearly exposes the party’s discrepancies in their policies. Also reveals that their only aim is victory, not serving the people. By aligning with Congress, Sena’s entire Hindutva votes will shift to BJP. Shiv Sena will be a great loser. Just like Communists, SP, and DMK, who lost by aligning with Congress, Sena also is going to lose its credibility.
Shiv Sena was formed in 1966, to first pick up the cause of Hindutva. The BJP, born 23 years after Shiv Sena, too picked up the agenda of Sena and took it to Hindi belt of northern India to expand. Both partners participated in Babri demolition. The connubial was perfect till 2014. Shiv Sena didn’t like BJP shaking hands with Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Kashmir. It looks like Sena is convinced that the Hindutva model of theirs, hijacked and monopolised by BJP is failing. For them, let the BJP sink with skeletons while they start afresh. The Shiv Sena has condemned BJP who calls Rahul Gandhi as Pappu and also has come down heavily on BJP for not, since three years, continuing practice of honouring Gandhi family including Indira Gandhi. What binds NCP and Shiv Sena is Marathas and Shivaji. NCP will follow Shiv Sena since they have dropped Hindutva. Three of them may put up formidable alliance against BJP in days to come. Though Uddhav want to break up with BJP most of his MLAs don’t want to sever ties with their alliance partner. In next election all four will fight separately helping each other at the local level but secretly. SS, INC, NCP will try their best to see that no one will get majority that will open doors for treading. BJP-SS Government will continue till next election, which will be along with Lok Sabha polls.
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