Mumbai: In a major decision, the Shiv Sena on Tuesday announced that it would go solo in the 2019 Lok Sabha and Assembly elections.
The party passed a resolution at its national convention to this effect and also stated that it would contest in every state on the Hindutva card so as to expand its base.
The Sena’s stand is significant as it leaves the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) without an important alliance partner even before the polls. Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray used the opportunity to slam Prime Minister Narendra Modi. However, it is not yet clear if the Sena will continue with BJP in power, as the polls have not yet been announced.
After the announcement, finance minister and BJP leader Sudhir Mungantiwar called up Uddhav Thackeray. The details of the call are not known but sources said the BJP wanted to speak to the Sena leadership about going solo in the coming polls. Reacting to the issue, BJP Mumbai president Ashish Shelar said that even his party was ready to go alone.
At the convention, party MP Sanjay Raut moved the resolution for the Shiv Sena to fight the Lok Sabha and Assembly Sabha polls on its own in 2019.
This was passed unanimously. He said the party would win at least 25 Lok Sabha seats (of 48 in Maharashtra) and 150 Assembly seats (of 288) in the state. Supporting the resolution, Mr Thackeray said “What is wrong in contesting polls with one’s own strength. Even Pramod Mahajan used to speak about going alone during Balasaheb’s period. Start preparing for polls. Sena will contest in every state for Hindutva, irrespective of our win or loss.”
The Sena chief slammed Mr Modi for not keeping promises. “If killing of cow is a sin then lying is also a sin and should be banned. Send the people to jail who have lied.”...