‘BJP, Sena playing bargaining game’

ST Correspondent
Tuesday, 24 July 2018

Most opposition leaders feel that news of possible Shiv Sena-BJP break-up is just pressure tactics

Pune: Though Shiv Sena and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) are attacking each other and giving hints of parting ways, senior politicians from the Opposition are doubtful about a break-up. 

They said the Shiv Sena is playing a bargaining game.

Speaking about the possibility of a break-up, NCP leader Ajit Pawar said, “I can assure you that they will not last together till the next assembly polls. A lot depends on what happens in the upcoming assembly polls in other parts of the country. They will watch the situation and decide. But the popularity of this government is fast diminishing and the Shiv Sena is unable to get along with the BJP. Hence, they will surely split.”

However, former MPCC president Manikrao Thackeray has a different opinion. He said, “I don’t think they will contest upcoming polls solo. They will join hands during the polls. It is just power tactics.” 

Communist Party of India (Marxist) leader Ajit Abhyankar said, “The motive of these parties is irrational and based on violence. BJP and Shiv Sena have the same motive. After BJP got power, they wanted an unchallenged rule. Sharing of ideas doesn’t have space in both the parties. They don’t want to share anything, except violence among people. No two violent entities can live together. One is bound to eliminate the other. Now, they are judging each other. If they feel people are going to dethrone them, they may come together.”

Socialist leader Subhash Ware said, “These are pressure tactics. It is a game of bargaining. The Shiv Sena is trying to keep their party intact. One wing in the Shiv Sena doesn’t want to share power with the BJP. Under pressure from this group, its chief Uddhav Thackeray has to walk a tightrope. At the national level, some alliance parties are going away from the BJP. It has got a setback in bypolls. The BJP needs support of allies in the 2019 polls. However, alliance parties want more seats. This is the Shiv Sena’s thinking too.”  

City-based political analyst and professor of political science Prakash Pawar said, “The BJP and Shiv Sena are playing a bargaining game. The Shiv Sena is killing time. Now, it doesn’t have a choice other than remaining in power. It is trapped. If it took a firm stand, it would have shown in Parliament during the no confidence motion. They avoided this. They are trying to pressurise the BJP for more seats in the upcoming polls.”

Nationalist Congress Party spokesperson Ankush Kakade said, “I don’t understand what is going on between the BJP and the Shiv Sena. They are misleading people by issuing contradictory statements. On the Trust Motion, the Shiv Sena was neutral. At the same time, the party was criticising the BJP government.”

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