Political analysts in Maharashtra view the recent meeting between senior Congress leader Narayan Rane and MNS chief Raj Thackeray as a politically strategic move to checkmate Shiv Sena’s growing influence in Konkan region of the state.
Thackeray, who was recently on a tour to Konkan, called on Rane at the latter’s residence in Kankavali in Sindhudurg district.
Rane had suffered back to back setbacks, first his defeat in the last year’s Assembly polls and then his loss in the Bandra East by-polls.
Similarly, MNS was routed in the last year’s Assembly polls as his party managed to win just one seat in the 288 member house.
The meeting of the two leaders was significant as it sent out a message of tactical understanding between MNS and Congress in Konkan politics to checkmate the Shiv Sena, political analysts said.
Former Chief Ministers Vilasrao Deshmukh and Ashok Chavan had adopted a policy to have a tactical understanding with Raj Thackeray to cut Shiv Sena to size and that showed in the election results as well, they opined.
“Raj’s meeting with a senior Congress leader and former minister could not have happened without knowledge and support of the state leadership,” analysts said.