Sanjay Raut appeals to return to party fold
Shiv Sena leaders are making frantic efforts to save the party from the ignominy of rift and losing power in Maharashtra.
After an emotional appeal by Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Wednesday, party Spokesperson Sanjay Raut made another appeal on Thursday. Raut says that the party is ready to move out of the ruling Maha Vikas Aghadi, if the defected members return to the party and talk to Thackeray in Mumbai. He has also given an ultimatum to do so within 24 hours.
Maha Vikas Aghadi, an alliance of Shiv Sena, Indian National Congress and Nationalist Congress Party was formed to keep Bharatiya Janata Party out of power. Shiv Sena contested elections with BJP and won 55 seats. BJP secured 106. The alliance was broken as equation of sharing Chief Ministerâ€™s post did not work.
With Shiv Sena leader Eknath Shinde rebelled along with about 35 party legislatures, the MVA government is in minority. Besides toppling the government Shinde has also pushed party chief Uddhav Thackeray in a tight corner. Shinde, who has not left the party as yet, may claim status as Shiv Sena leader in the State Legislature and also the party symbol (Bow and Arrow).
Looking at the situation Sanjay Raut has made the appeal to the rebel, to return to the party fold. Thackeray has announced to leave all posts he is holding, including Chief Minister and Party Chief. Thackeray has not resigned but has left the official residence to move to the family house.
Shinde had appealed to Thackeray to form a government with BJP and Devendra Fadnavis as Chief Minister, which was turned down. Shinde so far has not made any announcement of forming a separate party or joining the BJP. The leaders of the BJP are also tight-lipped over the issue.
NCP and Congress leaders also kept their mouths shut. They are discussing the issue within the party itself.