The bonhomie between Bharatiya Janata Party and Shiv Sena saw an unexpected parting during 2014 Assembly elections ending a 25-year alliance in Maharashtra following failure in agreeing on seat-sharing formula.
Although, the decades long relationship went sour with both the parties accusing each other of inflexible attitude, Shiv Sena was seen coming to the rescue of Modi government whenever it came under fire from the opposition. However, the Maratha manoos party came hard-hittingly on BJP at different occasions.
Be it PM Narendra Modi’s Rs 10 lakh pinstripe-suit row where Shiv Sena came to the defence of Modi, or taking a dig at recent Smriti Irani fake degree controversy, saying that fake degrees have become a trend.
Let’s dig into the history of the love – hate relationship of the two forthright Hindutva parties.
In 1989, the then BJP general secretary Pramod Mahajan reached out to Shiv Sena founder Bal Thackeray to form an alliance that would go on for next 25 years.
Hindutva ideology was the common fabric for the parties to tie the decades long coalition. The fiery leaders, passionate orators and extreme ideology – the parties had more than one thing in common, which actually turned the alliance into a political relationship.
The stage was set for both the parties having a clear understanding of each other’s responsibilities. BJP, with pan-India presence will play a larger role in the Lok Sabha elections, while Shiv Sena will have a greater part to fill at the state-level gaining more number of seats.
The prime factor for the successful alliance between BJP and Shiv Sena was their agreement on the seat-sharing formula. In 1990, the Shiv Sena would contest 183 of the 288 seats in the Maharashtra Assembly and the rest 105 went to the BJP. Over the years, the sharing ratio was altered with more parties joining the coalition. In 1995, Shiv Sena was contesting for 169 seats, and BJP for 116.
Though, the alliance could win just one of the total five polls it faced, the alliance never crumbled under the weight of losses; however, its strengthening factor, the seat-sharing formula resulted in the end of one of the longest political coalitions.
Though BJP, initially, showed inclination towards Nationalist Congress Party offer, the old flames – BJP and Shiv Sena ended up forming the government in Maharashtra.
Shiv Sena Uddhav Thackeray attacks BJP over Fake Degree Row and Pankaja Munde corruption charges