Un­cer­tain Fu­ture

India Today - - STATES - By Ki­ran D. Tare

On Jan­uary 26, when Ud­dhav Thack­eray an­nounced that the Shiv Sena would “go it alone” in the Fe­bru­ary 21 mu­nic­i­pal and zilla par­ishad elec­tions, he seemed confident that his party would re­tain its 22-year-old hold on the cash-rich Bri­han­mum­bai Mu­nic­i­pal Cor­po­ra­tion (BMC). But in­sid­ers fa­mil­iar with the Shiv Sena’s work­ings say it was a last-minute de­ci­sion, that Thack­eray had wanted to part­ner the BJP for the BMC polls but was dis­suaded by party vet­er­ans (they felt the lat­ter has ex­panded its base in the state at the ex­pense of the Sena). Ram­das Kadam, en­vi­ron­ment min­is­ter in Ma­ha­rash­tra’s rul­ing coali­tion and a se­nior Shiv Sena leader, says, “BJP lead­ers have re­peat­edly re­ferred to him (Thack­eray) as ‘mafia’. We can­not tol­er­ate the use of such foul words against our leader.”

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