Senior leaders including BJP’s national president may deny an alliance with the NCP, but MLA Narendra Mehta allegedly declared there is an alliance between the parties, in the house of the Mira Bhayander Municipal Corporation
Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leaders may continue to deny there is an alliance with the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), but the declaration of a BJP MLA has put many of the senior party leaders in a spot of bother.
BJP MLA Narendra Mehta allegedly said ‘Ma’am, let us speak now. Anyhow, you have an alliance with us in the state’
While Amit Shah, national president of the BJP, did not comment on an alliance with the NCP in Aurangabad on Saturday, MLA Narendra Mehta from Mira-Bhayander allegedly announced in the house of the Mira Bhayander Municipal Corporation that the NCP has supported the BJP.
This put the BJP in the soup, and many senior leaders have been receiving calls from various corners since Saturday, asking how an MLA, and a strongman of the party in the area, could say such a thing so lightly.
The incident occurred as Mehta’s colleagues wanted Mayor Caitlin Pereira (of NCP) to felicitate him for winning the assembly election, in the house of the corporation. Pereira refused to felicitate him saying that no prior notice was given to her about this. To this Mehta allegedly said, ‘Upar toh support kiya hai, yahan par kya problem hai? (You have supported us in the assembly, what is the issue here?)’
Senior leaders have been saying that BJP hasn’t and will not take NCP’s support. The Mayor confirmed that Mehta said this in the house, and said, “He did say that upar (assembly) support kiya hai. It’s true that the CM got the seat because of our support, but these are two different places. I have no issues felicitating Mehta, but then there should have been a letter to the Mayor’s office and the municipal secretary saying this. I wasn’t prepared to felicitate him.
Also, when Mehta was Mayor, he never felicitated then MLA Gilbert Mendonca or MLC Muzzafar Hussain.” Mendonca happens to be Pereira’s father.
A Shiv Sena member who was present in the hall claimed there was a lot of commotion by the BJP and NCP. “The BJP was demanding that their leader be felicitated, and the NCP wasn’t accepting it. In this commotion, we heard Mehta say to the Mayor, ‘Ma’am, let us speak now. Anyhow, you have an alliance with us in the state’,” said the Sena leader.
He added, “This proves that the BJP and NCP are partners and the BJP has taken the support of NCP, which we have been trying to say for the longest time. Now their leader has said this openly.”
The BJP’s local wing from Mira Bhayander, is trying to brush aside the comments as “not serious”.
A senior functionary from BJP’s local unit claimed, “Our leader did say to the Mayor something like BJP and NCP are now an alliance, but it was on a lighter note. There’s nothing much to read into this.”
In spite of repeated attempts, Narendra Mehta didn’t respond to our calls or messages.