Amid allegations of BJP’s involvement in Shiv Sena minister Eknath Shinde’s revolt against his party that has posed a question mark over the survival of the MVA government, BJP’s Maharashtra unit chief Chandrakant Patil on Friday asserted that his party did not play any role in the ongoing political crisis in the state.
He, however, admitted that Leader of Opposition in the Assembly Devendra Fadnavis visited Delhi on Thursday “for some work”, without divulging any details.
Mr Patil’s remarks come a day after NCP chief Sharad Pawar asserted that the BJP has played a role in the crisis that has befallen the Uddhav Thackeray-led government. Incidentally, rebel Sena leader Eknath Shinde, while addressing the MLAs in his camp in Guwahati, said in a veiled reference to the BJP that a “national party” has supported his rebellion and assured all help to the rebels.
Talking to reporters in Kolhapur, his hometown, Mr Patil said, “The BJP has nothing to do with the current internal bickering in Shiv Sena or in the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) (comprising Sena, NCP and Congress). I had a lunch with Devendra Fadnavis in Mumbai on Thursday afternoon, and then he left for New Delhi for some work.” “During our discussion, Fadnavis told me that some things are taking place. But had it (any development) been anything important, he would have definitely taken me into confidence,” he said.
Mr Patil said the BJP is currently busy in preparations for the 2024 elections.
Mr Shinde is presently camping with 37 rebel MLAs of the Sena and nine independents in a Guwahati hotel.
On Sharad Pawar’s statement about BJP playing a role behind Shinde’s rebellion, Patil said, “I feel Pawar and Sena’s Sanjay Raut exercise their right to freedom of speech excessively. I am not even watching daily news so not aware of what exactly happening in Sena.” When asked about reports that Mumbai-based BJP functionary Mohit Kamboj was in Guwahati with rebel Sena leaders, Patil said, “He has friends in every political party. He might have gone to help someone. I have no idea about his whereabouts.”