Mumbai: Even as the slugfest between alliance partners Shiv Sena and BJP in Maharashtra over a slew of issues peaked, the BJP on Friday ruled out any threat to the survival of the Devendra Fadnavis government which has completed almost one year in office.
"The differences between the BJP and ally Shiv Sena have not reached a breaking point where there could be a threat to the coalition government. This government would last for five years and would be strong."
"Even if you like it or not, you have to respect people's verdict. Nobody wants political instability. We have to learn from past experiences that whenever the non-Congress governments have botched up their mandate, they have not returned to power for a long time," senior BJP leader and Revenue Minister Eknath Khadse told reporters here.
The frosty relations between Sena, which could never reconcile itself to playing the second fiddle in state government, and senior alliance partner BJP have hit a nadir in recent past with the Sena blackening face of Sudheendra Kulkarni whose Observer Research Foundation (ORF) had recently organised a book launch of former Pakistani foreign minister Khurshid Kasuri here.
Sena had also stayed away from the foundation stone laying ceremony of BR Ambedkar memorial at Indu Mills here by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Khadse, who holds portfolios of Revenue, Agriculture, Dairy Development and Animal Husbandry as well as Minority Affairs, recalled that after the non-Congress experiment failed at the Centre in 1978, another non-Congress regime came to power only in 1996.
"Similarly in Maharashtra, the then Sena-BJP government called for elections six months before schedule in 1999...We had to wait for 15 years to come back to power again," he said.
Khadse said Sena and BJP are both answerable to people who have voted them to power and that "it is necessary to respect their mandate".
The minister also expressed the need to publicise the "welfare-oriented decisions" taken by NDA government in last one year.
"BJP workers as well as elected representatives have been directed to highlight the achievements of the government in their constituencies. There has been good co-ordination between party ministers and party workers," he added.
Sena, which never let go the opportunity to take potshots at Fadnavis, even raked up Godhra to target Modi, which has not gone down well with the BJP.
The party, which hailed manhandling of Kulkarni as a "mild form of protest", had also forced cancellation of the scheduled concert of Pakistani ghazal singer Ghulam Ali in Mumbai.