It is good decision the Congress has taken to ally with the Shiv Sena and be a part of the government in Maharashtra.
This will give them a stake in a politically important state like Maharashtra. It will also lead to their party being re-energised and will also improve their access to resources.
While allying with the Shiv Sena, the Congress is being seen as abandoning its ideology of secularism and inclusiveness as the Shiv Sena is known to be a Hindutva party.
However, it is not a new phenomenon that we are seeing.
By adopting a soft Hindutva stance to counter the BJP, the Grand Old Party has greatly diluted its stance on secularism.
This move to ally with a known Hindutva party is another step towards its ideology dilution.
This kind of cross-ideology alliances have been done in the past. It was done in 1989 when Congress had an alliance with the Janata Dal and the Janata Dal had an alliance with the BJP.
Even the Shiv Sena, which is largely Hindutva in today’s time, was the only party to support the Emergency imposed by Indira Gandhi. It has had a history of backing political and ideological rivals.
According to many experts, a senior Congress leader was present at the first Shiv Sena rally.
At that time, the main enemy was the Congress and the entire Opposition ganged up against them. We are seeing a same trend in a new avatar.
Congress is no longer the primary pole of Indian politics. The hard reality is that the BJP is that party now.
The immediate task is to ensure that the BJP sees some kind of a setback from a situation where they were so powerful and certain of forming the government in Maharashtra.
In fact, the BJP should have formed the government in Maharashtra because the pre-poll alliance they were a part of ended up getting the majority.
Not being able to form the government despite that is a setback for the saffron party and this will surely bear an impact on future state elections.