MUMBAI: In a significant development the Shiv Sena on Sunday gave a cold shoulder to members of parliament from Telugu Desam Party (TDP), who were on a mission to the city to garner support for their 'No Confidence Motion' against the Modi government at the center during ensuing monsoon session of the parliament.
TDP's Lok Sabha floor leader Thota Narasimham and MP P Ravindra Babu were in the city who said that they were looking forward to meet Shiv Sena President Uddhav Thackeray. However, Shiv Sena party sources said that Thaceray has declined appointment to the TDP leaders.
According to TDP members, their meeting was scheduled with Thackeray at 5.30 pm which was facilitated by Shiv Sena Lok Sabha MP from Amravati Anandrao Adsul. But, Shiv Sena sources confirmed that no such meeting took place today. While Thackeray had earlier openly met Modi bashers like West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and Hardik Patel from Gujarat, the party's stand on TDP has raised eyebrows.
Party sources said that Thackeray is particularly unhappy with Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu, who as an NDA partner had declined to side with the Shiv Sena against the BJP. The party is also said to be unhappy about TDP's Ashok Gajapathi Raju's decision as aviation minister to put one of their Lok Sabha members on no-fly list.
However, according to a senior party minister, the development indicates Shiv Sena's changing stand viz-a-viz BJP. Though both the parties have differences over several issues and keep bashing each other over it, they are likely to contest elections together and hence Shiv Sena won't do anything that will destabilize the government, the minister said.
Significantly, contrary to his earlier stand Thackeray, while speaking to journalists in Pune on Saturday, too had indicated that the Shiv Sena might ultimately join hands with the BJP during elections.