The Shiv Sena on Friday came out all guns blazing against its alliance partner the Bharatiya Janata Party over caretaker Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis’s statements holding them responsible for the stalemate in Maharashtra, betraying the mandate of the electorate and lying about an agreement on rotational chief ministership.
Addressing a press conference in Mumbai, Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray said that he had only aligned with the BJP in order to fulfil his promise to his father, late Balasaheb Thackeray, of getting a Shiv Sainik as Maharashtra Chief Minister at Raj Bhavan. "Shiv Sena was sweet-talked into this alliance. It was Amit Shah who came to Mumbai, to Matoshree. I did not go to Delhi to meet him. We had a clear conversation about portfolios and responsibilities. I do not know how good Amit Shah’s Marathi is but that is what he agreed upon."
Thackeray added that during his conversation with BJP president and Union Home Minister Amit Shah, the 50-50 formula was clearly discussed along with the post of Chief Minister. "Equal sharing of power agreed upon in Amit Shah’s presence," said the Sena chief, adding that the following the footsteps of his father late Bal Thackeray, to stand for the truth.
"I had promised Balasaheb that there will be a Shiv Sena Chief Minister one day, and I will fulfill that promise, I don’t need Amit Shah and Devendra Fadnavis for that," ANI quoted Thackeray as saying.
The Shiv Sena supremo also trained guns at the BJP and dragged JJP’s Dushyant Chautala to his sharpen attack at the alliance partner. Thackeray screened videos of Chautala’s pre-poll rallies ahead of the Haryana Assembly elections. The videos showed Chautala, now Haryana’s Deputy CM after his party announced support to the BJP to form a government, launching direct attacks at the BJP and Prime Minister Narendra Modi. "We are alliance partners of the BJP and we never said anything to discredit the BJP or Prime Minister Narendra Modi or Amit Shah."
The Sena supremo’s strong words came after Devendra Fadnavis’ no-holds-barred attack against the Sena, accusing the party of betraying the mandate of the electorate and lying about the agreement on rotational chief ministership of 2.5 years. "We are not a party of liars. It is the first time that someone has accused the Sena of lying. We never lie," Thackeray said.
Thackeray also invoked the Shiv Sena’s Hindu identity and said the RSS must decide if a party that does not follow the footsteps of Lord Ram, speaks lies, deserves to be called a Hindu party. "RSS must decide if we are a Hindu party or not," Thackeray said.
Devendra Fadnavis today tendered his resignation to the Maharashtra Governor, hours before the deadline for the current Legislative Assembly ends. He will continue as the caretaker CM till a new government is formed.