Senior Shiv Sena leader and former Maharashtra CM Manohar Joshi has said that his party and the Bharatiya Janata Party can come together in near future. Joshi said it will be better if the BJP and the Shiv Sena stay together, but made it clear that the parties do not want it at present.
"Instead of fighting over small issues, it is better to tolerate some things. It is good to share issues that you feel strongly about. If both parties work together, it is beneficial for both," he said.
Manohar Joshi, who headed a coalition government of the Shiv Sena and the BJP, between March 1995 and January 1999, however said that party chief Uddhav Thackeray will take a final decision at the right time.
"It is not that Shiv Sena will never go with the BJP again. Uddhav Thackeray will take the right decision at the right time," he said.
The senior Sena leader’s comments came in the backdrop of the recent parting of ways between the two old allies over sharing the Chief Minister’s post in Maharashtra. Though the BJP and Shiv Sena contested together in the state, they couldn’t form the government because Sena was demanding the CM’s chair for 2.5 years, a demand categorically rejected by the BJP. The Shiv Sena then joined the ranks with political opponents the NCP and Congress last month to form a non-BJP government.
The BJP had emerged as the single largest party winning 105 seats. The Shiv Sena, NCP and Congress won 56, 54 and 44 seats respectively in the 288-member Maharashtra Assembly.
Meanwhile, Shiv Sena leader Neelam Gorhe said that Manohar Joshi made the comment in his personal capacity and the Sena will continue with the NCP and Congress.
"Manohar Joshi has given a statement that Shiv Sena and BJP will come together soon, this is his personal statement and not Shiv Sena’s official stand. This kind of feeling and emotions in a generation of leaders is obvious," she said.