Ahead of Mayoral poll, BJP leader hints at alliance with Shiv Sena
With just a day left for filing of nominations for the Mumbai mayoral poll, a senior state BJP leader on Friday said he is confident that his party and Shiv Sena will come together to govern India’s richest civic body.
The next Mayor of Mumbai will be elected during the first meeting of the new House on March 8 and Saturday is the last day for filing nominations for the post.
“I am 200 percent sure that BJP and Shiv Sena will join hands in BMC,” Maharashtra Revenue Minister Chandrakant Patil said, adding that a formula which is acceptable to both the parties will be worked out.
Patils remarks came ahead of a crucial meeting of the state BJP core committee later today where the party is expected to decide its strategy for the mayoral poll.
The minister had recently said his party and Shiv Sena are natural allies who should put aside their differences and join hands once again to rule the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), in the backdrop of the election to the civic body throwing up a fractured mandate.
Patil had also reiterated that there was no threat to the BJP-led government in the state.
Meanwhile, suspense has been mounting over who will be the next Mayor of Mumbai, with the BJP and Sena eyeing the prestigious post though both the parties do not have majority of their own in the just elected House.
The elections to the 227-member BMC threw up a hung verdict, with the Sena winning 84 seats and the BJP 82.
Since then, four independent corporators have joined Sena, taking their tally to 88. Senior leader Yashwant Jadhav has been named the group leader.
BJP has also has attracted four more candidates, including Akhil Bharatiya Sena (ABS) corporator Geeta Gawli, taking their tally to 86. BJP has named Manoj Kotak as the party’s group leader in BMC.
The Congress has said it will contest the mayoral poll in BMC, which has an annual budget of over Rs 37,000 crore.
Ahead of the February 21 elections, the BJP and Shiv Sena split in BMC, which they had been ruling together for the last over two decades. However, they continue to be ruling allies at the state level and also at the Centre.