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Why Shiv Sena Is Giving Devendra Fadnavis Sleepless Nights

BJP partner Shiv Sena seeks bigger role in the government. Who will blink first in this battle of attrition?

Why Shiv Sena Is Giving Devendra Fadnavis Sleepless Nights
Uneasy Sits The Crown | Photograph by PTI
Why Shiv Sena Is Giving Devendra Fadnavis Sleepless Nights
outlookindia.com
2019-11-04T13:42:40+05:30

It’s an impasse only a few would have foreseen when it became clear on October 24 that Maharashtra’s mandate, though not exa­ctly overwhelming, was in favour of the ruling alliance of BJP and Shiv Sena. The BJP would have bel­ieved that the stage was set for the return of chief minister Devendra Fadnavis for his second consecutive term after a five-year tenure, a distinction none of his predecessors since Vasantrao Naik (1963-75) could boast of.  The saffron brigade bagged a majority in the 288-member assembly with the BJP and the Sena winning 105 and 56 seats respectively. And yet, even a week after the results, Fadnavis’s swearing-in has been put on hold amid a piquant political situation arising out of an unexpected spanner in their coalition wheel.

Read | It's A Local Call: Lessons From Maharashtra And Haryana State Elections

After being forced to play second fiddle for the past five years, the BJP’s mercurial ally, Sena, is playing hardball—staking claim to an equal share in ministerial berths and has also pressed for a rotational term of chief ministership for a period of two-and-a-half years each. Last week, once it became clear that the numbers of his major ally had considerably reduced in the new assembly, Sena supremo Uddhav Thac­keray called upon the BJP to enforce the so-called 50:50 formula for government formation in keeping with its “promise”, which he claimed had been made by BJP president Amit Shah during his visit to the Thackeray residence, ‘Matoshree’, ahead of the Lok Sabha elections this year. His party subsequently made it clear that it would not take a single step until the BJP hands over a written assurance to follow the 50:50 pact, a stand...

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