Updated: Wed, 06 Jul 2022 09:53 AM IST
Taking a swipe at Uddhav Thackeray over the Shiv Sena's alliance with the Congress and the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde on Wednesday said the Sena was not benefitted from the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA), adding that the party stood at fourth position in the Nagar Panchayat polls.
Speaking to news agency ANI, Shinde said he and other rebel leaders tried explaining the situation to Thackeray, but couldn't persuade him. He also said that his faction is not doing anything illegal, adding that his alliance has two-third majority in the 288-member Maharashtra legislative assembly.
"Shiv Sena, BJP contested 2019 assembly elections together but the government was formed with Congress, NCP. Due to this, whenever issues of Hindutva came up, matters relating to Savarkar came up, Mumbai blast issue came up, on Dawood issue came up and other issues when (these) came, we were unable to take a decision," Shinde said.
"Our MLAs faced difficulty in carrying out works in their constituencies as allies were trying to empower those who lost to them. Our MLAs were unable to do development works due to lack of funds... We spoke to seniors but to no avail. So our 40-50 MLAs did this," he added.
Slamming Thackeray, Shinde referred to his past in which he drove an autorickshaw and said "autorickshaw has left Mercedes behind". He also said that his government works for common people and is committed to giving justice to all sections of society.
"(Auto) rickshaw has left the Mercedes behind because this government is for common people, this is a government to give justice to every section. We will perform in a way that every constituent, everyone feels it is my government, it will work for me. This will be the difference," Shinde told ANI.
He also thanked the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Prime Minister Narendra Modi for their support to his faction. When asked about his remark of their alliance winning 200 seats in the next assembly polls, Shinde said 170 MLAs are with the alliance and only 30 more remain.
Lauding Devendra Fadnavis, Shinde said the BJP leader has shown his "big heart" by becoming the Deputy Chief Minister of the state. He said it was unexpected for Fadnavis but he followed BJP directions.
"It was unexpected for him, but he followed party directions. And a worker like me (of) Balasaheb and Anand Dighe, was made the chief minister, I am thankful to PM Modi, Home Minister Amit Shah and BJP chief JP Nadda. I thanked Naddaji yesterday. The perception that was there among people, that has been totally changed that BJP is not only for power but also for ideology," Shinde told ANI.