BJP-Sena differences deepen

BJP-Sena differences deepen

BJP-Sena differences deepen, Shiv Sena and BJP had contested 169 and 119 seats respectively in the 2009 assembly election.

Uddhav rules out 135 seats for BJP

Mumbai: Further hardening his stand on seat- sharing with BJP, Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray said he has rejected the saffron ally's demand for contesting 135 seats in Maharashtra assembly polls and hinted at going it alone, saying "everything has an alternative".

He, however, clarified that talks are still on to clinch a seat-sharing formula.
Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray praying before his father Bal Thackeray’s portrait (file photo)
"They (BJP) offered a proposal under which they wanted to contest 135 seats and I have rejected it," Uddhav, who had on Saturday asserted the next Chief Minister would be from "Shiv Sena only" if the saffron alliance came to power, told reporters.

Reflecting the growing tensions between the two oldest allies in the Centre's ruling NDA, he said, "Everything has an alternative. I have conveyed it to BJP that I can't go beyond a point (over the number of seats to contest)."

He was asked whether Shiv Sena had kept open the option of going to the hustings alone.

Shiv Sena and BJP had contested 169 and 119 seats respectively in the 2009 assembly election.

Uddhav also said since "talks are still on and till the decision on alliance is reached, I will not say anything negative".

"I have nothing to say on BJP spokesman Madhav Bhandari's comment that the talks have been stalled and BJP is comtemplating going alone. It is surprising that those who are not involved in the talks are saying discussions are not happening," he said.

The ties between the two parties, Uddhav said, were over 25-years-old and "going has been good for Shiv Sena and BJP together. We should pull down this Congress-NCP government and save the people of Maharashtra." "We want all Hindutva forces to come together. If BJP says the party with more MLAs will get chief ministership, it should not forget that it was also decided that Sena will contest 171 and BJP 117 seats in the assembly. How can one remember only one part of the arrangement made by Balasaheb (Shiv Sena founder Bal Thackeray)," he said. He said differences over the number of seats each alliance partner would contest was normal ahead of elections but the two parties have stuck together every time.

"BJP had its mission 272 for Lok Sabha poll, we have our mission 150 for the assembly election. Nobody should have any objection to it," he said.

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