NEW DELHI: As the NDA projected a united face, the Shiv Sena today declared that the monsoon session will be a "maha-muqabla" between the ruling alliance and the opposition as it came out in strong support against the demands of resignations of top BJP leaders.
"Their political character is bedag (spotless). In politics, sometimes you have to take certain decisions but it is not proper of muck raking against them," said senior Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut.
Raut, the party leader in the Rajya Sabha, hailed the Prime Minister Narendra Modi's decision to call the meeting of the NDA constituents, first of its kind ahead of a Parliament session. This, he said, will a go a long way to "restore" the communication in the ruling alliance.
Incidentally, last week, the Sena was upset over the Prime Minister not convening a meeting of the NDA parties.
"The constituent parties also have enough ammunition to counter the opposition," Raut said.
The Sena leader wanted the Prime Minister to hold such consultations with the heads of the constituent parties like Uddhav Thackeray of the Shiv Sena, Parkash Singh Badal of the Shiromani Akali Dal.
"Today the BJP has a majority in the Lok Sabha and we pray that it should remain. But democracy is very unpredictable. What happens in 24 hours, one does not know. Who will need whom after four years...one does not know? So it is important to preserve the unity for the larger good," Raut said.
The editor of the Sena mouthpiece Samanna said neither his party nor the Akali Dal are "deserters" and have been with the BJP through "thick and thin" for more than two decades.
Raut also had a word of praise for Rahul Gandhi the way he has been showing aggression over the past few months. "We believe that the nation needs a strong opposition party," he said, adding with a sense a sarcasm that the Congress play opposition politics for some years now.
The monsoon session, which begins on July 21, is expected to witness aggression from the Opposition over range of issues including the Lalit Modi and Vyapam controversies. The Opposition has already threatened to stall the session if Union ministers Sushma Swaraj and Smriti Irani and Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh chief ministers Vasundhara Raje and Shivraj Singh Chouhan are not sacked.
The Shiv Sena is the oldest and largest constituent of the NDA with 18 MPs in the Lok Sabha. However, it has had an uneasy relationship over the past one year. The BJP broke its more than two and half decades old alliance with the Sena just ahead of the Maharashtra Assembly polls in October last year.