(PTI Photo/Mitesh Bhuvad)
(PTI Photo/Mitesh Bhuvad)

The BJP-Shiv Sena combine emerged victorious in 41 of the 48 Lok Sabha seats in Maharashtra, out of which Sena’s share is a meaty 18. But even after bagging 18 seats, Shiv Sena leaders fear that BJP might ditch the party just before the Maharashtra Assembly elections like it did in 2014.

A senior Shiv Sena leader told the DNA, “There are chances that the BJP may try to corner us before the state Assembly polls after its runaway success in the Lok Sabha elections.” According to DNA, a BJP leader also admitted that the results had led to Sena’s bargaining power. A BJP leader told the leading daily, “The Shiv Sena was pegging its hopes on the BJP’s seats declining beyond its 2014 tally of 282. This would give them a greater voice in Delhi and also in Maharashtra.”

While the BJP won 23 seats and Shiv Sena won 18, fears are now surrounding the Sena that BJP might snap ties just like 2014. The Shiv Sena on Friday said the massive mandate the NDA got in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls was due to the popularity of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the political management of BJP chief Amit Shah.

A day after Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led BJP scored an oversized victory, the Shiv Sena, which has played the role of the party’s in-house critic over the years, called its ally “big brother” in national politics. “We have always given the status of big brother to the BJP in national politics. There is no leader left who can outmatch him (PM Modi). And I don’t see any leader like him in the next 25 years,” Sanjay Raut told news agency ANI.