CLAIMING THAT a deliberate attempt had been made to create a rift between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the Shiv Sena, the party on Thursday said that the PM was not briefed properly on what had transpired in the talks between BJP president Amit Shah and Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray in regard to 50:50 power sharing arrangement.
“The Prime Minister has not been told about what actually transpired in the closed-door meeting between Uddhav Thackeray and Amit Shah. If he was told about what actually happened in the meeting, he would have accepted the Sena’s contention. Someone is trying to create a rift between the PM and the Sena. There is an old and emotional relation between the two and someone can’t stand this relation,” Sena MP Sanjay Raut said.
He was reacting to the comments made by Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Wednesday, when he rejected Sena’s claim that BJP had promised it rotational chief ministership for the Assembly elections.
“In all meetings, the PM used to say that Devendra (Fadnavis) would become the chief minister. However, at all rallies, even Uddhav Thackeray would say that the CM would be from Sena. When (BJP and Sena) had entered into an alliance (for the state polls), Uddhav had said that there would be 50:50 power sharing. Why did Amit Shah then not question this statement? You never said anything till after the Lok Sabha elections. With everything decided, this issue has come up now,” he said.
On Shah taking a swipe at Sena by saying that it was not BJP’s tradition to disclose what transpires behind closed doors, Raut said: “Amit Shah said what was said behind closed doors should not be revealed. If people do not act on their words, than such things come out. This was not an ordinary talk, this was a talk about the self-respect and future of Maharashtra.”
He added that Sena could have countered PM’s speeches where he had said that Fadnavis would become the chief minister if the BJP-Sena combine came to power. “We respect Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the dignity of his post and hence, kept quiet.”
Raut further said that the room in which Shah and Uddhav had met holds a special significance to the Sena, as party founder Bal Thackeray would meet dignitaries there and the party would not lie about what had transpired inside it.
“What they term as merely a room is a divine temple for us because late Bal Thackeray used to meet and advise everyone on everything there. So, we will not lie about the understanding arrived at there,” he added.
Maintaining that Sena would not cow down to threats, Raut said: “If you do not agree with us then leave us to our plight. No one should try to become an obstacle in the path that we have chosen. Do not try to threaten us. We will ensure that we destroy those who threaten us.”
Since the announcement of the Assembly results, Raut has been the most vocal Sena leader to criticise and challenge the BJP. He had also acted as a communicator between Uddhav and NCP chief Sharad Pawar and is seen to be instrumental in ensuring that the two parties come together to form a government.
Raut was admitted to Lilavati hospital on Monday afternoon after complaining of chest pain. He subsequently underwent angioplasty to remove two blockages in his heart. He was discharged on Wednesday morning.