Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray today met BJP President Rajnath Singh here to discuss the strategy for the forthcoming Lok Sabha polls and the alliance between the two parties, besides the upcoming Rajya Sabha election. According to sources, the unscheduled meeting between the two lasted about an hour.
BJP’s general secretary incharge of Maharashtra Rajiv Pratap Rudy was also present. Uddhave Thackeray. PTI Sources said besides discussing issues of Maharashtra politics and the alliance, the candidature of former RPI leader Ram Das Athawale, who has joined BJP, for the forthcoming Rajya Sabha poll was also discussed.
The discussion on the February 7 Rajya Sabha poll assumes significance as there are seven seats from Maharashtra. Two seats each are likely to go to Congress and NCP, while BJP and Shiv Sena will get one each and one seat is being keenly contested. The meeting is significant as it came a day after the state Coordination Committee met, a BJP leader said.
Shiv Sena spokesperson Sanjay Raut said BJP and Shiv Sena are the oldest ideological allies whose tie-up goes back to over 20 years. The two parties ran a coalition government in Maharashtra between 1995 and 1999. BJP is seeking to expand the alliance under its umbrella ahead of the Lok Sabha elections and is trying to rope in more partners as well as strengthen ties with its old allies. Among the candidates retiring from Rajya Sabha are Dalwai Husain Umar, Prakash Javadekar, Y P Trivedi, Murli Deora, Rajkumar Dhoot, Bharatkumar Raut and Janardhan Waghmare.