The Shiv Sena on Thursday demanded a recounting of votes cast in the bye-elections in Maharashtra’s Palghar Lok Sabha seat, and urged the Election Commission to not declare the results yet, ANI reported. The Shiv Sena lost the bye-election in Palghar to the candidate of the Bharatiya Janata Party, its alliance partner in the state.
The poll panel, however, rejected the request and handed over the winning certificate to BJP’s Rajendra Gavit, ANI reported.
Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray claimed the Election Commission has no control over elections now, and urged all political parties to approach the judiciary against the polling body, News18 reported. Election commissioners should be elected, not appointed, he added.
Reacting to the results of the bye-polls held on Monday for 13 Assembly and Lok Sabha constituencies, Thackeray said the BJP had lost more seats than it had won. He also took a jibe at Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Adityanath, and said that the BJP leader was losing polls in his own state but was visiting other states as a star campaigner.
The Bharatiya Janata Party does not seem to be in a majority anymore, Thackeray added. “They thought they would rule for 25 years but they have lost their majority in the Lok Sabha in four years,” he said, adding that the ruling party does not need its friends and allies anymore.
On May 26, the Sena had called the BJP a “mad murderer” that stabbed anyone that came in its way. In an editorial in its mouthpiece Saamana, it had accused the BJP of backstabbing by fielding former Congress leader Rajendra Gavit for the Palghar Lok Sabha bye-election. The Shiv Sena had in turn nominated Shrinivas Wanaga, the son of BJP MP Chintaman Wanaga, whose death earlier this year necessitated the bye-poll. This had prompted the BJP to accuse the Sena of betrayal. On Thursday, the BJP won the Palghar seat.
In January, the Shiv Sena had said it will contest the 2019 Assembly elections as well as the Lok Sabha polls alone, not in alliance with the BJP. The party had passed a resolution to this effect at its national executive meet. In October, Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut had called the BJP the “principal enemy” of his party and said the Sena was part of the Maharashtra government “just for the sake of it”.