BJP-Shiv Sena may share equal seats in 2019 election

BJP-Shiv Sena may share equal seats in 2019 election

Courtesy : Mumbai Bureau31/08/2018 22:12

BJP has sent strong feelers to ruling partner Shiv Sena for a pre-poll alliance in Maharashtra with an indication that it is ready to adopt 50:50 seat-sharing formula in the ensuing Lok Sabha and also in the state assembly polls slated for 2019. BJP's move aims to keep Shiv Sena in good humour especially when opposition parties are engaged in stitching a grand alliance in Maharashtra and the rest of the country.

The proposal comes at a time when Shiv Sena, despite sharing power in the state and at the Centre, has been reiterating to go solo.Senior BJP minister, who did not want to be identified, told DNA, "BJP is open to having truck with Shiv Sena and is confident to weather the anti-incumbency by taking on the combined opposition in the state. The alliance issue is being handled by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and party president Amit Shah. Interestingly, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, who enjoys cordial relations with Thackeray, has been a strong proponent of the alliance." He informed that the party may once again reach out to Shiv Sena for a formal talk on the same.

 "However, the bone of contention is who will leave seats to allies and how many from their respective quotas. BJP is quite optimistic to resolve these issues amicably with Shiv Sena and win maximum seats of the total 48 Lok Sabha seats in Maharashtra," the minister said. He, however, clarified that the party has simultaneously geared up for poll preparations by strengthening the organisational network up to 90,000 booths across the state.

According to the minister, if BJP succeeds in bringing Shiv Sena on board for Lok Sabha polls, it will later initiate talks for 144:144 seat-sharing formula with the latter for assembly seats. ''At this moment, the priority is the Lok Sabha elections,'' he noted.

On its part, Shiv Sena is holding region wise meetings to assess the ground situation and prepare itself for an independent fight if the alliance did not work with BJP. ''Thackeray, on Tuesday, held marathon meeting with party MPs, legislators, corporators and office bearers from Greater Mumbai to review poll preparations. The Shiv Sena at its national executive meeting held in January has decided to independently fight Lok Sabha and assembly elections, and the decision still stands. Let BJP come up with a concrete proposal, then Thackeray will take a call while keeping party's interests intact,'' Shiv Sena MP said.

 

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