Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut on Tuesday reiterated that the next chief minister of Maharashtra would be from his party, even as the political stalemate in the state entered the 11th day after the Assembly election results were announced, PTI reported.
Raut said the politics of Maharashtra was changing and his party would win in its fight for justice. “The decision on Maharashtra will be taken in Maharashtra, the chief minister will be from the Shiv Sena,” he told reporters in Mumbai. “What you call hungama [commotion], is not hungama, but the fight for justice and rights, victory will be ours.”
Raut has also kept up the pressure on the BJP through the party’s mouthpiece Saamna. In an editorial on Tuesday, he referred to Devendra Fadnavis as the “outgoing chief minister”, and said when he lands in Mumbai after visiting Delhi, “he will have to take some steps. The direction of Maharashtra [politics] will depend on the steps to be taken by Fadnavis.”
“This exercise of gaining the required numbers is no less challenging than landing a plane in Delhi’s smog-filled weather,” he added. He claimed the people of the state know what is happening and “who is meeting whom and for what purpose”.
The Sena wants the chief minister’s post for half of the five-year tenure and an equal division of Cabinet portfolios. The Bharatiya Janata Party wants Devendra Fadnavis to continue as chief minister for the full five-year term. Last week, Uddhav Thackeray cancelled a meeting with the BJP after Fadnavis denied that his party had agreed to an equal power-sharing agreement before the Lok Sabha polls.
On Monday, Fadnavis arrived in New Delhi to meet with Union Home Minister and BJP chief Amit Shah, and Nationalist Congress Party President Sharad Pawar met interim Congress chief Sonia Gandhi. Meanwhile, in Mumbai, Raut met Maharashtra Governor Bhagat Singh Koshiyari but called it a courtesy call.
Even as Shiv Sena has indicated that it would not be averse to forming the government with the support of the NCP and the Congress, reports said Sonia Gandhi has ruled out any support to them for a new power alignment in Maharashtra.
The deadline for the government formation in Maharashtra is November 9, when the term of the 13th Assembly ends. Unless a new government is formed before that, President’s Rule can be declared in the state.
The BJP won 105 seats in the Assembly polls, results for which were declared on October 24. The Shiv Sena won 56 seats, the Nationalist Congress Party bagged 54 constituencies and the Congress 44 seats.
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