BJP Shiv Sena alliance 2019: The intense war of words between the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Shiv Sena, the NDA’s oldest allies, may finally be drawing to a close. The two parties are believed to have reached a consensus over the contentious issue of seat-sharing for the upcoming Lok Sabha polls and Assembly polls in Maharashtra later this year. A report by The Indian Express, citing sources, said that BJP president Amit Shah and Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray have reached a broad understanding and the seat-sharing formula will be declared soon.
The development comes just ahead of Amit Shah’s visit to Mumbai where he will be meeting the Sena chief at the latter’s residence. The IE report said that the two had been holding discussions on seat-sharing over the phone for the last few days. It said that if some remaining minor issues get sorted out, an announcement of the deal could take place as early as Monday. As per the BJP chief’s schedule, he will first visit Jaipur where he will address a party meeting.
Battling desertions by trusted allies and a tough contest on the cards, the BJP is believed to have adopted a rather generous attitude in the parleys to keep the Shiv Sena in the alliance. The two were reportedly working on the 50-50 formula for the Assembly polls. It said that Chief Ministership was, however, an issue between the two.
The Shiv Sena was opposed to an idea that the partner with higher number of seats after polls gets the CM’s post. Uddhav was insistent that irrespective of the final tally, his party should get the post, The Indian Express reported.
As far as Lok Sabha election is concerned, the Sena has demanded the Palghar seat (reserved for ST) from the BJP. The BJP had fielded its candidate from here in 2014. The IE report said that BJP may concede to Sena’s demands as it had won the byelections held in the state last year. The state sends 48 MPs to the Lok Sabha. In 2014, the Shiv Sena had contested 22 seats and won 18.