Its been a week since the results of the October 21 Assembly elections in Maharashtra were announced, yet there seems to be no progress in the government formation in the state, with allies BJP and Shiv Sena still at loggerheads over the formula of power-sharing.
Meanwhile, Sharad Pawar’s National Congress Party has jumped into the entire fiasco claiming that they would find ways to form a government in Maharashtra if the BJP-Shiv Sena alliance falls through. NCP national spokesperson Nawab Malik said, “If the BJP-Shiv Sena alliance does not form the government in Maharashtra, then the NCP will have to seek ways to form government in the state. No party is untouchable for us,” Nawab Malik said.
As the saffron allies, Sena and BJP are locked in a dispute over the power-sharing formula for the new government, NCP has obliquely extended its backing to Shiv Sena as the NCP spokesperson added: “There is no question of a different ideology, NCP will never support the BJP. We are ready to sit in opposition,” he said.
Meanwhile, a meeting between Shiv Sena’s Sanjay Raut and NCP supremo Sharad Pawar at his residence in South Mumbai on Thursday triggered speculations about the possible formation of an alternative government in the state. However, Raut said the meeting was a “courtesy call”.
Ever since the Maharashtra assembly results were declared, BJP and Shiv Sena have been grappling to reach a final settlement regarding the formation of government in Maharashtra.
Government formation is in limbo as Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray had upped the ante over the pre-poll ’50-50′ agreement he claims to have with the BJP almost immediately after the results were announced. Its been a week now since Sena has been moving back and forth on its power-sharing rant while with every passing day, the BJP appears more and more adamant on its stance, dismissing the continuing jibes by the Shiv Sena on the power balance in the BJP-Sena alliance and insisting that Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis will continue to hold the post for the next five years.
BJP had emerged as the single largest party by winning 105 seats and Shiv Sena 56, in the 288-member Maharashtra Assembly. On the other hand, the NCP and its ally, the Congress, won 54 and 44 seats, respectively.