Mahagathbandhan may crumble even before poll results: Shiv Sena

Mahagathbandhan may crumble even before poll results: Shiv Sena
The Sena, taking a dig at Chandrababu Naidu’s efforts to forge an alliance of opposition parties, said the country can’t afford to have a coalition government crawling with the help of several small parties

Uddhav Thackeray-led Shiv Sena on Monday took a dig at opposition parties for trying to come together for the sole purpose of keeping the BJP out of power, a day after several exit polls predicted a massive win for the BJP-led NDA.

Taking a swipe at TDP chief Chandrababu Naidu’s efforts to forge an alliance of opposition parties, it said he was unnecessarily exhausting himself by running from pillar to post as there was no guarantee of this “coalition” would stay intact till the results.

Elections to 542 seats of the 543-member Lok Sabha ended Sunday and the counting of votes is slated for Thursday, May 23.

Most exit polls have forecast another term for Prime Minister Narendra Modi, with some of them projecting that the BJP-led NDA would get over 300 seats to comfortably cross the majority mark of 272 in the Lok Sabha.

“The ‘Mahagathbandhan’ (grand alliance of opposition parties) has at least five prime ministerial hopefuls…their hopes are likely to be dashed going by the current indications,” the Sena said in an editorial in party mouthpiece ‘Saamana’.

“The country cannot afford to have a coalition government crawling with the help of several small parties,” it opined.

Referring to Andhra Pradesh CM Chandrababu Naidu’s meetings with several opposition leaders in the last few days, the Sena said some people think after the declaration of results, the situation in Centre would be unstable and “they want to benefit out of it”.

“The opposition has assumed the BJP would not come to power, so they are trying hard to gain the support of all possible parties to keep the BJP out of power,” it said.

“Naidu is trying for a coalition but in reality, his efforts are going to be futile. He met NCP chief Sharad Pawar twice in Delhi, but there is no guarantee of this possible coalition continuing to stay intact by May 23 evening,” said the Sena, an ally of the BJP at the Centre and in Maharashtra.

It claimed the Left parties were unlikely to open their account in West Bengal, and the Aam Aadmi Party was expected to meet a similar fate in Punjab, Delhi, and Haryana. Even the Left’s base in Kerala was likely to shrink further, it said.

“Naidu himself had a hard time in Andhra Pradesh where YSR Congress leader Jaganmohan Reddy seems to be putting up a strong contest. In AP’s neighbouring Telangana, compared to Naidu’s TDP and the Congress, the TRS led by K Chandrasekhar Rao is likely to secure a major win,” it said.

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