Mumbai | Jagran News Desk: Taking the standoff between the BJP and Shiv Sena over the contentious issue of power sharing in Maharashtra a step further, Sena leader Sanjay Raut on Friday said that the people of Maharashtra want a chief minister from his party.

“If the Shiv Sena decides, it will get the required numbers to form stable government in the state. People have given the mandate to form government on basis of the 50-50 formula that was reached in front of people of Maharashtra. They want a chief minister from the Shiv Sena,” Raut told reporters this morning.

"No ultimatum to the BJP (on government formation). They are big people," the Rajya Sabha MP said. 

Earlier today, he posted a tweet in Hindi, which said: “Sahib, don't feed your arrogance...many Alexanders have drowned in the ocean of time.”

Also Read | Alternate govt in Maharashtra? Amid BJP-Sena deadlock, Sanjay Raut meets NCP chief Sharad Pawar

The remarks came a day after Raut met NCP chief Sharad Pawar, triggering speculation about the possible formation of an alternative government in the state. 

The meeting came amid the ongoing deadlock between the alliance partners BJP and Shiv Sena over the latter's demand of 50:50 power sharing in the new government, which it claims was decided between the two parties during the pre-poll seat-sharing talks. 

Sena has demanded CM's post for 2.5 years, claiming that it was part of the seat-sharing agreement. However, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis on Tuesday refuted the ally's demand saying that Sena had proposed equal sharing of the chief minister post during seat-sharing talks but the BJP had not agreed to it.

On Wednesday, Raut had given an indication of the Sena's apparent climbdown, saying it is necessary for the party to stay in the BJP-led alliance in the larger interest of Maharashtra, but without compromising on "respect".

However, Sena's reiteration of its demand comes amid media reports suggesting that the BJP, which elected Devendra fadnavis as its legislative party leader on Wednesday, may offer deputy chief minister’s post to Shiv Sena along with 13 ministerial berths. 

Times of India, in its report, quoted sources saying that the BJP would send a proposal to the Sena stating that it would keep 26 ministerial posts, including key portfolios like revenue, finance, home and urban development, for itself and give 13 to its ally. 

On the other hand, an NDTV report said that back-channels talks between the two alliance partners have led to a plan under which Devendra Fadnavis will remain Chief Minister for five years with two deputies - one from the Shiv Sena and the other from the BJP.  

In the recent polls to 288-member Assembly, the BJP won 105 seats, a loss of 17 seats compared to its 2014 tally. The Sena's tally also came down to 56 seats from 63 in 2014. A resurgent NCP won 54 and the Congress bagged 44 seats.

Posted By: Abhinav Gupta