WHILE THE government formation talks are going on between Shiv Sena, Congress and NCP, hectic lobbying has started amongst Sena MLAs who are eyeing ministerial berths,
The party is, meanwhile, keen on inducting aggressive leaders as its representatives in the Cabinet to ensure that they can hold their own against Congress and NCP bigwigs who have greater experience in governance. The Sena is also expecting a hostile reception from BJP once its moves to the treasury benches. The party believes that having aggressive and vocal ministers would help blunt BJP’s attack.
Sources said that if Sena gets the CM post for five years, party chief Uddhav Thackeray is likely to be the candidate for the top job. “If we have to share the CM’s post for two-and-a-half years with NCP, then Uddhavji may not be the CM, as it would not suit his stature,” said a party leader.
The leader added that senior leaders like Subhash Desai or Eknath Shinde can be contenders for post of rotational
CM. “Worli MLA Aaditya Thackeray is not keen to be in the Cabinet immediately as wants
to learn things first.”
Party insiders said probable ministerial candidates include Ravindra Waikar and Anil Parab from Mumbai, Pratap Sarnaik from Thane, Ramdas Kadam, Uday Samant and Bhaskar Jadhav from Konkan, Shambhuraj Desai from western Maharashtra, Tanaji Sawant and Abdul Sattar from Marathwada, Dada Bhuse and Gulabrao Patil from north Maharashtra and Sanjay Rathod and Ashish Jaiswal from Vidarbha.
“Aggressive faces like Kadam, Sattar, Parab and Jadhav may be inducted to counter BJP and other parties as well. Sattar will also be the party’s Muslim face in the government,” said a leader.
The leader added that Sarnaik would be inducted to keep a check on Shinde, who has a sizable following among Sena legislators. “Jaiswal is also an old timer and may be inducted to expand the party in Nagpur. Some other ministers will be repeated in the new government.”