Shivsena party worker outside Antony D'silva School at Dadar in Mumbai.23/02/2017. Pic/ Pradeep Dhivar
With the trends indicating early lead for Shiv Sena in the BMC polls, a senior party leader on Thursday exuded confidence that there will be no need for them to forge an alliance with BJP in the Mumbai civic body.
"The response of the people has been very good. There are several places where the Sena is leading. This is all due to the faith of people in the leadership of (late Sena supremo) Balasaheb (Thackeray) and Uddhav ji," Sena MP Anil Desai told reporters at the Sena Bhavan here.
"People of Mumbai, with their wisdom, are ready to bring the Sena to power on its own. There will be no alliance needed (with the BJP)," he said.
To a query on Maharashtra BJP president Raosaheb Danve's visit to 'Matoshree' (Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray's residence) yesterday, Desai said it was a personal visit.
"He had only come to invite Uddhav ji to his son's wedding. It was a personal visit and no hidden political meaning should be seen behind it," he said.
Meanwhile, the BJP appeared to be softening its stand against Sena, and said, the latter will now have to take the first step to decide the future. The Shiv Sena and the BJP had engaged in a high decibel campaign for the Mumbai civic polls with the alliance
partners trading charges at each other.
"It was Sena which first took the step of breaking the alliance with us, and they will have to now take the first step to decide the future course," BJP MLA Parag Alavani said. Opposition Congress, which stood a distant third after the Sena and the BJP as per the leads available, sought to put the blame of the party's internal differences for its poor performance.
"When elections were announced, I said Sena will get maximum seats and that's what is seen now. The question now is if they get full majority," senior Congress leader Narayan Rane said. "But the way BJP was campaigning and how the Chief Minister (Devendra Fadnavis) insulted (Sena chief) Uddhav Thackeray was not befitting for the CM. Mumbaikars did not like what was spoken by him," he said.
Rane said Congress lost out because of internal differences among its leaders. "Leaders did not come together. (Sanjay) Nirupam
(Mumbai Regional Congress Committee chief) should have got all leaders together to win. He did not do enough," he said.