MUMBAI: Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray on Friday claimed that the BJP was eyeing a reconciliation with it as they have "understood their mistake", even as he ruled out any possibility of an alliance with it after the BMC elections.
"(BJP president) Amit Shah says it is a friendly match between them (in BMC polls). It only means that they have realised their mistake. They have understood that they have taken wrong steps and it will be difficult for them to fight the anger of Mumbaikars. Thus, they are now trying to get back to us," Thackeray said.
Shah had last Sunday said there were no differences with the Sena and that he hoped its decision to contest the Maharashtra civic polls independently was not going to cause damage to the alliance.
The Shiv Sena recently snapped ties with the BJP in Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), the country's richest civic body, the elections for which are scheduled on February 21.
Recently, Uddhav Thackeray had said that the BJP was merely serving its notice period. Speaking to The New Indian Express, he clarified, saying, "Our ministers met Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis to demand crop loan waiver.
The BJP has assured farmers of Uttar Pradesh that their crop loans would be waived off. I said, why should farmers in Maharashtra not get the same benefit when we are ruling here.
He added, "The Chief Minister has been talking about transparency in the municipal corporation. I asked him why not have similar transparency in the State government too. That would prevent doubts over issues like Chikki scam. Our expectations are that simple. But, the government would stay on ‘notice period’ till issues like these are resolved."
Saying that the BJP has been inducting goons into the party, he added, "This is unacceptable to us. The economic survey has shown that Mumbai tops in transparency. The Chief Minister said that we are misquoting the document. But, if that is the case, why was the BJP with us all these years in the corporation?".
Thackeray also said that he was not satisfied with the style of functioning of the BJP government.
He said: "What are the achievements of the governments (at the Centre and in the State) in the past two and a half years? Did they promise demonetisation in their manifesto? If not, why did they take such a big decision in a haphazard way?"
He added, "The BJP has changed. They use the word transformation - parivartan. But, I don’t understand what kind of transformation this is, where they have started sporting goons on their posters instead of stalwarts like Vajpayee and Advani. The BJP was really a party with a difference in the days when we joined hands with them. But, they have ‘transformed’."
When asked if the Shiv Sena would withdraw support to the Shiv Sena at the Centre, Thackeray said: "We are in the government for the people. We are there to keep them under control. We have to play this balancing act of being in power and acting like an opposition to keep a tab on the BJP. We shall keep criticising their policies and decisions which we feel are wrong.
The party is contesting elections in Goa and Uttar Pradesh. talking about taking on a national role, Uddhav said: "We have been receiving invitations from all across the country ever since the 1990s. However, Post 1992 (Babri) we took a conscious decision to concentrate only on Maharashtra and let BJP look after the other states. But, now I’ve started honouring all invitations. My idea is that there needs to be a grand alliance of regional parties from other states that would honour regional sentiments."