Ramdas Athawale offers to broker peace between Shiv Sena, BJP; says parties should split CM-tenure equally

Pune: Union minister Ramdas Athawale Sunday said that he had devised a formula to satisfy bickering allies BJP and Shiv Sena which involved splitting the tenure of chief ministership in Maharashtra equally between the two parties.

He said that he would discuss this proposal with leaders of the Sena and the BJP, allies in the Maharashtra and Union governments.

File photo of Ramdas Athawale. Firstpost

File photo of Ramdas Athawale. Firstpost

"The formula of the party with the maximum number of seats getting the Chief Minister's post is already there but I am going to discuss this new formula (splitting the CM's tenure) with leaders of both the parties," Athawale said.

The two parties have been at loggerheads over several issues and Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray has said that his party would fight all future polls alone.

The BJP, on the other hand, has said that it wanted an alliance with the Sena but was willing to fight on its own if an agreement was not reached.

The Union Minister of State for Social Justice and Empowerment also staked claim to the Mumbai South Central Lok Sabha seat currently held by Sena's Rahul Shewale.

"If the BJP and Sena form an alliance for the 2019 general elections, I will ask Sena to leave Mumbai South Central constituency for me and, in return, I will convince the BJP to leave Palghar seat for Sena," he said. The BJP and Sena, despite being allies, had fought against each other in the Palghar Lok Sabha bypoll in May this year with the former's Rajendra Gavit defeating Sena's Shrinivas Wanaga by 29,572 votes.

Athawale, however, added that it would not be "very difficult" for him to get the Mumbai South Central seat if the Sena and BJP don't forge an alliance. He added that the Bahujan Vanchit Aghadi, an alliance floated by Bharipa Bahujan Mahasangh leader Prakash Ambedkar and Asaduddin Owaisi's AIMIM, would hurt the Congress and benefit the ruling NDA.

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Updated Date: Oct 16, 2018 07:13:40 IST

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