BJP frantic to patch up with Thackeray, claims Shiv Sena leader
By Quaid Najmi
Mumbai, Aug 20 (IANS) Making a startling claim, a senior Shiv Sena leader Kishore Tiwari said on Friday that the state Opposition Bharatiya Janata Party is "frantically trying" to patch up with Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray.
The BJP is also willing to concede all demands of Sena -- its former partner for over two decades -- which has now allied with the Nationalist Congress Party and Congress to head the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government in the state.
More so since Thackeray could emerge as a major national Opposition contender in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, which has spooked the BJP, he pointed out, in comments to a private local TV channel.
Tiwari -- accorded an MoS status, added: "Every two weeks or so, the BJP leaders call up the CM, requesting to bury the past and start afresh."
"In fact, people like Leader of Opposition Devendra Fadnavis, even want me to mediate between the Sena-BJP and hammer out an understanding between the two parties," Tiwari later elaborated to IANS.
He contended that since the past over six months, Fadnavis and other BJP bigwigs are seeking appointments with Thackeray Sa'b "to clinch a settlement" comprising Thackeray remaining CM for full five years with their support, with choice of ministries and smoothening all other irritants.
However, the CM has given a 'thumbs down' sign -- even publicly as recently as last June -- to all BJP's overtures, while making it clear that -- "I have given my word to the NCP-Congress and will not betray them."
Top Sena leaders, including Thackeray, have repeatedly accused the BJP leadership of "treachery and breaking its promise of equal power-share arrangement," made in February 2019, ahead of the Lok Sabha elections.
Later, the BJP allegedly reneged on it, virtually calling Thackeray a 'liar', which ultimately resulted in the unprecedented MVA government taking power in November 2019.
At one point in November 2019, worried BJP leaders from New Delhi had woken up Thackeray at 3 a.m., begging to forgive-and-forget, bury the hatchet and start on a clean slate, Tiwari said.
Still not succeeding, Tiwari said the BJP resorted to 'wrecking the brand-new MVA' with Fadnavis suddenly becoming CM of a two-man government in an unprecedented dawn ceremony at Raj Bhavan.
"It was only the determination of the NCP President Sharad Pawar, Sena MP Sanjay Raut and other Congress leaders that the bloodless coup on democracy was exposed...Fadnavis' so-called second-term lasted barely 80 hours," a grim Tiwari recalled.
After that mega-failure, he said the BJP leaders kept targetting the CM and his family members personally, and attempted to drag them into the Sushant Singh Rajput death case.
"Till date, the BJP is constantly harassing the MVA, misusing central agencies, filing fake cases against Sena, NCP leaders or ministers and their families, not sparing even ex-BJP leaders who joined MVA...All these gimmicks are intended to force a break-up of the 3-party alliance," Tiwari declared.
The strong reactions of the Sena's "farmer-face" came after questions on the renewed attacks on Shiv Sena launched by Union Industry Minister Narayan Rane since Thursday during his 'Jan Ashirwad Yatra'.
(Quaid Najmi can be contacted at: [email protected])