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Shiv Sena wants its CM to chair the power

No matter whatever are the speculations in Maharashtra, it’s Shiv Sena that wants its leader to be Chief Minister, they want CM chair to be shared in two tenure, two and half years Sena and two and half years BJP, nothing more or nothing less. Amid the impasse between the saffron allies for the 14th day since the election result, Shiv Sena has remained adamant. Earlier, addressing a press conference, Sena’s Sanjay Raut put forth the views of party president Uddhav Thackeray and claimed that the fight is for ‘truth and lie.’ He further asserted that there was no deadlock from Sena’s end.

In 2014, BJP and Shiv Sena fought election without alliance. BJP got 122 seats and Shiv Sena got 73. BJP claimed power as largest party and they didn’t even approach Sena for support. Congress and Sena boycotted the voting, NCP abstained and BJP won trust vote. Later, after distribution of important portfolios to own MLAs, BJP tried to woo some Sena MLAs to join BJP. Then Uddhav Thackeray announced support to BJP and asked for ministerial portfolio. BJP said we are short only 22 MLA’S for majority so will offer only 2 cabinets and one minister of state. After hard bargain they settled on 2 cabinets and 2 state ministers. In 2014, Cong and NCP had 42-41 MLAs respectively so nothing much to focus on opposition and Fadnavis Government enjoyed its full term.

Now in 2019, BJP made three mistakes, one it made agreement with Shiv Sena offering Dy. CM post and fifty per cent ministerial post. Two, they wanted to finish Sharad Pawar and much hyped ED enquiry of Pawar become emotional events for Maratha voters. Pawar fought this battle for survival and he stood as man of the match. He created waves for Congress too. Both got 104 seats. BJP and Sena both lost 24 Seats. Now Sena –NCP-Congress together got a chance to control horse of BJP from power. Sharad Pawar is a family friend of Thackerays and got chance to become a Kingmaker. He may not join power but drive government being remote controlled. So, Congress and Pawer said if Sena breaks from BJP then they will extend support. Before Fadnavis goes for trust vote, NCP may contest for Speaker’s post. NCP-Congress will support and automatically fate of Fadnavis will be unambiguous. In current scenario, Shiv Sena has upper hand and BJP in spite having large vote share has nothing to dominate their allies. Moreover, Pawar proved it to BJP that there are still voters for Congress and NCP and eliminating them from politics is not easy.

It was agreed between the BJP and the Shiv Sena that they will fight the elections together for Lok Sabha and later to the state assembly. After the assembly elections, they will share the power between them. While, this was announced in the press conference by Uddhav Thackeray and Maharashtra CM, later, Shiv Sena leader Ramdas Kadam said that it was also agreed upon that there should be a Shiv Sena CM for 2.5 years and a BJP CM for the other 2.5 years. Subsequently, an audio clip attributed to Thackeray is going round that whoever has larger numbers will take CM post. Both will share seats equally, as has been agreed upon. Looks like they deferred a potentially troublesome issue to be resolved at a later date.

It is true that BJP could win more seats than Shiv Sena even without the alliance with that party. But BJP does not want to defeat Shiv Sena, because there are no differences with that party ideologically. If these two parties contested separately, Congress would be the beneficiary. Also in the future Congress may play a role in the state of Maharashtra. BJP did not want it to happen. BJP wants to settle a score with Congress and make India Congress Mukth, which is highly impossible at this time. If at all it has to achieve it, BJP need to have an alliance with Shiv Sena. If these two combine, they can pull more than 50% votes and sweep the entire state. Hence, BJP went in for an alliance and also agreed for 2.5 years share in administration of the state. Uddhav Thackeray may think he has put BJP in a situation where it has no choice but to accept his demands. It appears that Sena, Congress, Pawar Congress want surging BJP to be held back or sabotaged at all costs! That is because in today’s world, nobody wants other to win, leave aside accepting one’s defeat gracefully. That would be impossible to swallow.

Working for larger cause, upholding democracy are things one only speaks, never means! Politics is all about self-interest. So coming to options before BJP, accepting Sena’s proposal would mean Modi has to read or listen to ill coached novice. Secondly, it would also mean turning blind eye to indiscretions and embarrassments of a partner who will leave no stone unturned to extract its pound of flesh. Leaving Sena with two Congress may be an alternative worth considering since it is very likely that the new dispensation would collapse under its own contradictions.

The BJP claims to have 121 MLAs including Independents and small parties on its side. But this number is much less than the 145-mark, the number needed in the Maharashtra Assembly. Therefore, the party has decided not to stake claim to form a government. On the other hand, if no government is formed by November 8 and the Governor calls the BJP since it is the single-largest party, then in that case, the state leadership will decide only after consulting the top leaders if they should go ahead or not. November 8 is the last date for the formation of government in Maharashtra. 14 days have passed since the poll results were announced on October 24 but there is a delay in the government formation as BJP-Shiv Sena still engaged in ironing out differences.

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Dr Vaidehi Taman
Dr Vaidehi an Accredited Journalist from Maharashtra is bestowed with Honourary Doctorate in Journalism, Investigative Journalist, Editor, Ethical Hacker, Philanthropist, and Author. She is Editor-in-Chief of Newsmakers Broadcasting and Communications Pvt. Ltd. for 11 years, which features an English daily tabloid – Afternoon Voice, a Marathi web portal – Mumbai Manoos, monthly magazines like Hackers5, Beyond The News (international) and Maritime Bridges. She is also an EC Council Certified Ethical Hacker, Certified Security Analyst and is also a Licensed Penetration Tester which caters to her freelance jobs.

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