Shiv Sena not in politics of trade, will declare stand once no one else forms government: Sanjay Raut

Sunday, 10 November 2019

Sena leader Sanjay Raut on Sunday said his party would declare its next strategy once no one else is able to frame government in Maharashtra, and asserted that politics was not a trade for his party.

Mumbai: Sena leader Sanjay Raut on Sunday said his party would declare its next strategy once no one else is able to frame government in Maharashtra, and asserted that politics was not a trade for his party.

Without taking name of any individual or party, he said the bubble of being "invincible" has burst and the arrogance of "buying" a politician to frame government will no longer work in the state.

The Shiv Sena "will step in" ifno one forms government, Sanjay Raut told reporters here.

He additionally welcomed the decision of Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari to invite the BJP to form government in the state.

The single largest party had to be called. We fail to understand why the Bharatiya Janata Party did not stake claim in 24 hours (after results) if it was confident that it had the majority," the Rajya Sabha member said.

"I don't think the Bharatiya Janata Party has enough strength to stake claim for government formation...I am told the governor has asked the BJP to inform him about its decision by 8 pm on 11 November," he said.

On the Shiv Sena's future course of action, he said, "Let the image be clear on the first step by governor. The Shiv Sena will declare its strategy if no one else is able to form the government."

He said Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray will be meeting the party MLAs at 12.30 pm on Sunday.

"He is meeting as a routine. We will perceive how the day progresses," said the Rajya Sabha member.

The Bharatiya Janata Party won 105 seats in the October 21 elections, while the majority mark in the 288-member Assembly is 145.

Its ally Sena won 56 seats, but the 2 parties are bickering over the chief minister's post.

Asked if the Shiv Sena has entered into a 'deal' with the Congress and Nationalist Congress Party,  Sanjay Raut said, "We are not traders to make deals. Politics is not a trade for the Shiv Sena. 'Profit' and 'loss' (words) are not in our dictionary."

He also dismissed the possibility of legislators switching sides.

"I don't think MLAs of any party would defect. If anyone tries to split another party for government formation, I don't think it will work this time," Sanjay Raut said.

"The arrogance of buying any politician and form a government will no longer work in this state. The bubble of being invincible has burst," Sanjay Raut said.

On posters put up by Shiv Sena workers near Thackeray's residence here demanding that he be the chief minister, Raut said, "Uddhav Thackeray is the Shiv Sena leader and he will take an appropriate decision at the right time. He has already said he will make a Shiv Sainikthe CM."

When a reporter pointed out that the Sena was not criticising the opposition Nationalist Congress Party in the wake of a possible alliance between the two parties,  Sanjay Raut said, "We have not criticised the Bharatiya Janata Party either. The election campaign is over and things said during the campaign are irrelevant."

On if the Congress will support the Shiv Sena to form government, Sanjay Raut said the Sonia Gandhi-led party is "not enemy of Maharashtra".

"If Congress leaders have taken any decision to ensure a stable government in Maharashtra, we welcome it," Sanjay Raut said.

Every political party has differences with the other party. Like, the Shiv Sena and Bharatiya Janata Party differ on the issue of border dispute between Maharashtra and Karnataka over Belagavi (Belgaum) district, Sanjay Raut said.

"We always expected a strong stand of the Bharatiya Janata Party on Belagavi district with its counterpart (Bharatiya Janata Party) in the Karnataka government. At the same time, there are some leaders in the Congress and Nationalist Congress Party who identify themselves with the Shiv Sena's stand on this border dispute issue," he said.

Maharashtra claims Belgaum, part of the erstwhile Bombay Presidency but at present a district of Karnataka, on linguistic grounds.

Sanjay Raut also welcomed the Supreme Court's decision that cleared the way for construction of a Ram Temple at the disputed site in Ayodhya.

"People waited for a long time for this decision," he included.

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