Mumbai | Jagran News Desk: The political commotion in Maharashtra amid the impasse over BJP and Shiv Sena over the issue of power sharing in the new government refuses to die. In a dramatic development, Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut met NCP chief Sharad Pawar, further sparking off speculations about the possibility of Sena exploring options for a non-BJP government in the state.

However, ending the possibility of an alternative government, Pawar said that the BJP and Shiv Sena should form government in Maharashtra soon, adding that his party will work as a responsible opposition.

He reiterated his previous stand that the people of Maharashtra have given BJP-Shiv Sena the mandate to form government and want NCP to sit in the Opposition. 

"I don't have anything to say yet. BJP and Shiv Sena have got the mandate of people, so they should form government as soon as possible. Our mandate is to play the role of Opposition," he said.  

"Where is the question of a Shiv Sena-NCP government? They(BJP-Shiv Sena) are together for last 25 years, today or tomorrow they will come together again," Pawar added. 

Further taking a dig at Raut's claim, Pawar said that he too was wondering how Sena will gather support of 170 MLAs in the 288-seat state assembly. 

"There is only one option, which is that the BJP and Shiv Sena should form the government. There is no other option other than this to avoid President's rule," he said. 

Pawar said he is keen to see the Union Home Minister's skills in Maharashtra. "Amit shah is known for his skills to form governments in the states where the BJP doesn't always have numbers. I'm keen to see his skills in Maharashtra," Pawar said.

Ahead of the meeting, Raut claimed there was a "consensus" between the BJP and his party before the Maharashtra Assembly elections on sharing the chief minister's post. He that no fresh proposal has been received from the BJP or sent to it.

On the possibility of imposition of President's rule in the state, Raut said, "We will not be responsible for it.
Those conspiring to do this are insulting the people's mandate."

Also Read | Maharashtra Impasse | Speculations of non-BJP govt gain pace as Sanjay Raut meets NCP chief Sharad Pawar

The meeting comes a day after the NCP said that it was ready to join hands with Sena to form a government, but only when it walks out of the alliance with the BJP. According to reports, Pawar had also offered the chief minister’s post to Sena -- a demand which has been the bone of contention between the ruling alliance partners.

Sources in the NCP said their party wants Arvind Sawant, the lone Shiv Sena minister in the Union government, to resign before going ahead further with the Sena.

The two leaders had meet last week too, after Raut had claimed that Sena had support of 170 MLAs and the next chief minister will be from his party. 

Meanwhile, senior Congress leader met Union Minister Nitin Gadkari, who was backed by BJP’s ideological mentor RSS to play as peacemaker between the two bickering allies. 

Pawar, when asked about the meeting between Patel and Gadkari, said that it must be about some road work. 

There has been no headway in government formation after results of the state polls were declared on October 24.

The BJP, which won 105 seats, and the Shiv Sena, which bagged 56 seats, are locked in a bitter tussle over sharing of the chief minister's post and ministerial portfolios in new government, even 13 days after the Assembly poll verdict handed them enough seats to cobble up a coalition government.

They won 161 seats together in the 288-member House, much above the halfway mark of 145. Besides, the opposition NCP won 54 seats while the Congress got 44 seats.

Posted By: Abhinav Gupta