Maharashtra minister and Shiv Sena leader Abdul Sattar on Tuesday said only Union minister Nitin Gadkari can bridge the differences between their two parties and hinted at the Bihar formula for sharing power in the state. Sattar, a minister of state in the Maharashtra government, made the remarks after a meeting with Gadkari here, during which he discussed highway projects in the Marathwada region.
“If the BJP leadership in Delhi desires, anything can happen. After all, it allowed junior alliance partner (JD-U) to take the lead in Bihar,” Sattar told PTI. The BJP gave the post of the Bihar chief minister to Nitish Kumar despite emerging as the single largest party in the 2020 assembly elections.
“If Gadkari decides to build the bridge between the BJP and the Shiv Sena, he can approach Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray and request him. Only Uddhav saheb can take a decision on an alliance between the Shiv Sena and the BJP,” Sattar, an MLA from Sillod in Maharashtra, said. The legislator also described Gadkari as a senior leader from Maharashtra who enjoyed a close relation with the Thackeray family.
He said Gadkari had played a key role in the Shiv Sena-BJP alliance that had lasted for more than three decades. Sattar added that the Maharashtra chief minister had high regard for Gadkari and there can be some forward movement if the BJP leader approached Thackeray with a proposal.
The Shiv Sena-BJP alliance snapped after the 2019 assembly elections when Thackeray accused the BJP of going back on its word to share the chief minister’s post with the Shiv Sena for 2.5 years. Sena later joined hands with the NCP and the Congress to form the Maharashtra Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government with Thackeray as chief minister, denying the BJP, the single largest party in the assembly, a shot at power.
Sattar, a three-term MLA, had quit the Congress ahead of the 2019 Lok Sabha elections and was set to join the BJP after a meeting with the then chief minister Devendra Fadnavis. However, after protests by BJP leaders in Marathwada, Sattar joined the Shiv Sena and was re-elected to the state assembly in 2019.
With inputs from News18