THE ROOT cause of the deterioration in the relationship between allies BJP and Shiv Sena has been Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis’s October 29 press conference where he had claimed that the two parties had not decided on a 50:50 power sharing formula and that he would be the CM for whole five-year tenure.
The statement has rankled Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray so much that during his 38-minute-long media interaction, he made repeated references to the press conference and criticised the BJP for painting him as a liar. He maintained that he did not want to be in a pact with liars.
“I had time but didn’t speak with BJP because I will not speak with someone who is calling me a liar. I will not speak to you until you accept what you have said. I don’t want to keep such false relations,” Uddhav told mediapersons on why the talks between Sena and BJP on government formation had stopped.
On Fadnavis saying no equal power-sharing formula was decided ahead of the Lok Sabha polls, he added: “The statement was shocking and painful and then the talks were stopped. The talks can happen on what was decided… and you could have said first two-and-a-half years for BJP and then second half for us. I could have adjusted our share in the portfolios,” he added.
“I supported the government as Fadnavis was the CM. If someone else was there, I don’t know what I would have done. I didn’t expect this from him,” the Sena chief said.
Uddhav maintained that he still does not see the BJP as an enemy but it “should not lie so much”. “BJP should form the government immediately. Otherwise, everyone has all options open and we cannot leave people like that.”
“The BJP might have been shocked with my statement of having all options open. But today I am surprised how it can claim that a BJP government will be formed when it does not have the majority. If options are available to BJP, then how can you accuse me if I think about options,” he asked.
The Sena chief, however, claimed that he has not spoken with Congress or NCP so far. “The decision about the alliance now rests with the BJP,” he said.
With Fadnavis alleging that Sena leaders had unfairly criticised Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP chief Amit Shah, Uddhav said his party had never criticised them. “Modi has twice described me as (his) younger brother… that might have made someone jealous,” he said.
He reminded BJP of party leader Udayanraje Bhosale’s past critical comments about Modi. “What did Udayanraje say about Modi when he was in NCP? What was (JJP leader) Dushyant Chautala speaking about Modi before joining hands with BJP (in Haryana)?” he asked and played a video clip of Chautala’s past statements. The Sena had criticised the Modi government’s policies but not the PM in person, he said.
Uddhav said he would ensure that a Sainik becomes the CM of Maharashtra.