Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and Maharashtra BJP state President Chandrakant Patil arrive for a meeting with party supporters and MLAs at the party office in Mumbai on Sunday.
Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and Maharashtra BJP state President Chandrakant Patil arrive for a meeting with party supporters and MLAs at the party office in Mumbai on Sunday.
Photo by ANI

Mumbai: The BJP has finally reconciled to playing the role of an Opposition party for the next five years.

But, in its new avatar, it will keep up the show of belligerence and project it as a ‘BJP versus the Rest’ contest and focus on shaming the Shiv Sena for its breach of trust. The new doctrine will be tested in the Navi Mumbai and the Aurangabad civic elections.

The BJP, however, remains a divided house. In its two-day council session, the party did not give Pankaja Munde and Eknath Khadse a chance to speak.

The session was almost hijacked by the Fadnavis camp. Sensing the drift, former minister and former State President Sudhir Mungantiwar chose not to attend the session. Khadse and Radha Krishna Vikhe Patil, too, left after the first part of the session.

The BJP conclave was organised for the first time since it lost power and was expected to get a huge response. However, in a sign of its waning clout, not just the disgruntled leaders, but party workers too stayed away.

Though Chandrakant Patil was appointed as party president, it was Fadanvis who seemed to be calling the shots. Result: Vinod Tawade, Chandra Shekhar Bawankule remained on the side lines.

‘Imported’ leaders from other parties -- Narayan Rane, Ganesh Naik and Udayan Bhosle – sat in the front row.

The first ‘battle’ that awaits the BJP is the Navi Mumbai municipal election in 2022, where it will take on a ‘united’ MVA.

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