Mumbai: Slighted at being dismissed derisively as a junior partner, Shiv Sena Chief Uddhav Thackeray has taunted the BJP, saying that the list of candidates for the Assembly elections will be prepared by Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis.
This is a clear indication that there is considerable heartburn in the Sena over the BJP attempt to ride roughshod over it in the matter of seat sharing.
The offer of a measly 110 seats has added insult to injury and Uddhav’s caustic comment is being seen as a desperate move to mount pressure on the BJP to accommodate them further
More than anything, what bothers the Sena is the symbolism of it all – because if it accepts 110 seats, the perception gets reinforced that it is the younger brother and will always play second fiddle to the BJP.
Uddhav has responded with much sarcasm: “I have asked CM Fadnavis to prepare the list of seats that should be earmarked for Sena. The CM will give us the numbers and the list of seats.
Then, I will present this seat-sharing formula to my party and we will take a call.” (He made the remarks as he welcomed Bhaskar Jadhav, NCP legislator, into the party fold.) Shiv Sena wants 144 seats out of the total 288 seats and is ready to accommodate allies in nine seats out of its quota.
It is ready to compromise with the BJP on seats only if they are assured of more berths in the next government. The BJP has not yet responded positively to either. Perforce, Uddhav has put out a message that the Sena will be more aggressive, unless the BJP bends backwards.