Days after Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) chief Sharad Pawar said that the Maha Vikas Aghadi government will complete its five-year tenure, Shiv Sena Member of the Parliament (MP) Sanjay Raut, on Sunday, said Shiv Sena will continue to hold Chief Minister’s post till 2024. He, thereby, clearly indicated that it was non-negotiable and there was no scope for discussion on the sharing of CM’s post.
Raut said the ruling partners NCP and Congress have their commitment that Shiv Sena will hold CM’s post. “None of us have confusion in our minds. I want to clear the confusion for all. The chief ministership of this state will remain with Shiv Sena for the five years,” said Raut, who was speaking at Nashik after completing his five-day north Maharashtra tour. “The CM's post will remain with Shiv Sena for a full five years. The post will not be shared, as it is a commitment that was given by the allies when the Maha Vikas Aghadi was formed,” he noted.
Raut recalled that he was a witness to the talks when the CM's post was being discussed among three partners. "I was part of the discussion. I was witness to it. A commitment was given to Shiv Sena that it will hold the post for a full five years," he said.
Raut said NCP chief Sharad Pawar recently said that CM’s post will remain with Shiv Sena, which is leading the MVA government. On Congress president Nana Patole's remarks that Congress will be the largest party in the state after the 2024 assembly polls, Raut said there is a video viral on social media in which it is said that Patole aspires to be the CM. “There is no harm in aspiring for a post. There are several claimants in all parties. In Congress, there are several leaders capable of even leading the country," he said.
Raut said the MVA is an alliance of three ideologically different parties. "We have come together to run a government and now merged into one political outfit. All three have the right to expand their base and strengthen the organisation," he said.
To a question on poll strategist Prashant Kishor's recent meeting with NCP chief Sharad Pawar, the Rajya Sabha member said Kishor has met several political leaders before and has worked even for Narendra Modi. “If all the opposition parties come together to put up a good fight against Narendra Modi in 2024, what's wrong in that?'' he said.
To a question on BJP leader Devendra Fadnavis’ remarks that Modi will be re-elected in 2024, Raut responded, “When did we say that it will not happen? Fadnavis is just putting forth his party's stand." Modi is the top leader of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).”