The bitter split between the BJP and the Shiv Sena seems to have reached the point of no return. The two parties which originally shared the same ideological values of Hindutva have broken apart after the Shiv Sena couldn’t resist the temptation of compromising ideological values for political power. The electoral mandate was clearly in favour of a BJP-Shiv Sena government with the BJP clearly taking the primary role. However, Shiv Sena soon lost track of its ideological values and started making the illegitimate demand of 50:50 formula for the post of Maharashtra CM.
While leaders of both the parties have been blaming each other for the split in the coalition, recent statements of two key leaders representing their parties elucidates the stand of both the parties. We are talking about Union Home Minister Amit Shah and senior Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut. When faced with similar questions, both of them replied in a very different manner, after which it has become clear as to which party stands firm on its ideological commitment and which party has fallen prey to megalomania.
When asked about what caused a split between the BJP and the Shiv Sena, the Union Home Minister, Amit Shah said, “This is not in the ethics of my party to make public discussions that were held behind the closed doors. There has to be the dignity of public discourse.” He added, “But I would like to make it clear that if there is any party which has suffered the most with the imposition of President’s Rule in Maharashtra, then it is the BJP. We have lost a caretaker government. The opposition has lost nothing.”
Clearing the air around the imposition of President’s rule in the state of Maharashtra, Union Home Minister Amit Shah also said, “If they (Opposition) wanted to gain public sympathy by creating a misconception about president’s rule, then it means they do not trust the intelligence of the public.” He also exposed how the allegations against the imposition of President’s rule was an attempt to gain sympathy by creating a misconception. He further elaborated, “I do not want re-election in Maharashtra. After the completion of the six-month period, the Governor will take legal opinion and take the constitutional step. Those who say that imposing president’s rule was unconstitutional, I would like to tell them that they still have their rights. They just do not have the required numbers. If they have numbers, then they can go and form the government.”
Shiv Sena leader, Sanjay Raut on other hand gave a totally unwarranted reaction and went over the top in his statement about the split between the BJP and the Shiv Sena. Speaking about Union Home Minister Amit Shah’s remark that what is spoken behind closed doors should not be made public, Raut said, “It was Balasaheb’s (Thackeray) room, where Uddhav and Amit Shah decided. It is a temple for us and talks were held in that temple. If they say they never discussed such things (50:50 formula), it is an insult to Balasaheb. We swear on him and if they had said anything else, they should better disclose it. We can never forget whatever was discussed in that temple.” Raut took his bitter attack a step further and alleged that the Union Home Minister, Amit Shah never disclosed the 50:50 formula deal to PM Modi. He said, “We respect Prime Minister Narendra Modi. However what happened in the meeting between Amit Shah and Uddhav Thackeray, it’s information was not given to him.”
Raut has therefore invoked Balasaheb Thackeray in an attempt to take a dig at the BJP. While he invoked the Shiv Sena founder and made an emotional pitch as if his party religiously follows Bal Thackeray’s ideals and legacy, whereas the fact is that the Shiv Sena is currently involved in negotiations for a coalition government with the NCP and the Congress. This is in sharp contrast to the Hindutva ideology that Bal Thackeray stood for, and continues to epitomise even after his demise. Shiv Sena has deserted the ideals of Balasaheb Thackeray and is now using his name only for making political gains.
Union Home Minister Amit Shah made sensitive yet straightforward remarks about the split between the two parties. Sanjay Raut, on the other hand, went over the top, dragging in the departed soul of Balasaheb Thackeray into the bitter political crisis and also making unwarranted allegations of Amit Shah concealing the alleged discussions between him and the Shiv Sena chief, from the Prime Minister. This shows which party is interested in steadfastly sticking to its ideological values and ideald, and which party is interested in the extraneous considerations of political power, mudslinging and personal remarks.