Long-Term BJP Ally Shiv Sena To Contest 2019 Elections Alone

| January 23 , 2018 , 14:34 IST

The Shiv Sena on Tuesday passed a resolution that it would be contesting the upcoming Maharashtra assembly polls, as well as the 2019 Lok Sabha elections independently, without its long-term ally BJP with which it is currently forming the Maharashtra government.

Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray confirmed that the party would contest elections independently in a press conference after the party's national executive meeting on Tuesday.

"We will fight elections in every state for the cause of Hindutva , I take this vow today," Thackeray said.

Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut moved the resolution to contest the elections independently at the party's national executive meeting on Tuesday and the resolution was passed unanimously.

"The BJP allied with the Sena in the name of Hindutva and the Sena kept patience for Hindutva. However, the BJP in the last three years has been demoralising the Sena and using power to do so," Raut said at the meeting.

"We will fight 2019 Assembly and Lok Sabha elections alone," said Raut after the meeting.

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Fighting independently, Shiv Sena has pledged to win at least 25 seats out of the total 48 in Lok Sabha elections and 150 seats out of 288 in the state assembly.

Although the BJP and Shiv Sena have been allies since 1989, cracks had started appearing in the alliance, leading to rumours of a possible break-up. The equation between BJP and Shiv Sena worsened after BJP won the maximum Maharashtra parliament seats, relegating Shiv Sena as the minor partner,  reversing the previous status quo.