Union Minister Ramdas Athawale on Monday said the BJP and the Shiv Sena can come together if the former agrees to give the Uddhav Thackeray-led party the post of Maharashtra chief minister for a full five-year term.
Speaking to reporters in Pune, Mr Athawale said the coming together of the two former allies was not a big deal, adding that he would request the BJP to consider his plan.
“My proposal is that a thought should be given to the possibility of BJP and Shiv Sena coming together by (BJP) offering CM position to the latter (Shiv Sena). BJP and Shiv Sena coming together is not a big deal. Even Sainiks feel the two parties must come together,” said Mr Athawale.
Asked on the BJP taking potshots at Uddhav Thackeray by alleging the state does not have a “full time CM”, Mr Athawale quipped the post must be given to Devendra Fadnavis, who led a coalition government along with the Sena between 2014 and 2019.
Speaking on the Uttar Pradesh polls to be held next year, Mr Athawale said the ruling BJP must give his RPI(A) five to six seats as part of an alliance.
Such an arrangement would benefit the BJP as RPI(A) has supporters in UP and if the BJP gets the votes that were once in the kitty of Mayawati and her BSP, it could retain the state with over 300 seats, Mr Athawale claimed.
He said the Samajwadi Party under Akhilesh Yadav would not be able to dislodge the BJP government in UP as excellent work had been done by Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath who had introduced several welfare schemes. The Union minister said, in view of the COVID-19 pandemic and the new Omicron variant, people should avoid gathering in large numbers at Koregaon Bhima near Pune on January 1 to commemorate the 1818 battle there.
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