NEW DELHI/MUMBAI: Senior Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut on Sunday reiterated that the next chief minister of Maharashtra will be from his party - a key demand which was categorically rejected by its longtime NDA ally BJP.
Raut made this remark after paying tributes to late Shiv Sena founder Balasaheb Thackeray on his seventh death anniversary.
''We will do anything for Balasaheb, the government will be formed. The promise which Uddhav Ji made to Balasaheb that there will be a Chief Minister from Shiv Sena...you will soon see that Maharashtra CM will be from Shiv Sena,'' Raut said.
Shiv Sena leader Uddhav Thackeray, his wife Rashmi, Sanjay Raut, Arvind Sawant and many top Shiv Sena leaders earlier on Sunday paid tributes to Balasaheb Thackeray.
— ANI (@ANI) November 17, 2019
Raut had on Saturday slammed the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) over the way party-led National Democratic Alliance was working and said there is a lot of difference between "the old NDA and today`s NDA".
Talking to reporters, Raut also said that his party MPs will now sit in opposition benches, a week after the Maharashtra-based party pulled its lone MP Arvind Sawant out of the Narendra Modi-led NDA government.
Raut said the existence of NDA was in question and it is not a domain of any single party.
"There is a question on the existence of NDA. NDA is not the domain of any one party. Several parties have joined the alliance over time. Some of them did not even have the same ideologies. However, we had remained a part of it," Raut had said.
He said four leaders - Balasaheb Thackerey, Atal Bihari Bajpai, LK Advani and Prakash Singh Badal - had mainly formed the alliance.
"There is a lot of difference between the NDA of that time and today`s NDA. Who is the convener of NDA today? Advaniji, who was one of its founders has either left or is inactive," Raut said.
Shiv Sena, which has been very critical in its remarks on BJP, on Sunday accused it of using Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj's name for political mileage.
In a strongly-worded article in its mouthpiece 'Saamana', the party sharpened its attack on the BJP, saying Maharashtra is seeing a downfall because of those leaders who didn't keep their promises.
Uddhav Thackeray's party had also refused to attend the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) meeting to be organised ahead of Parliament`s winter session on Sunday evening.
Replying to a question about Shiv Sena attending the NDA meeting, he said: "No, Shiv Sena will not go."
BJP and Shiv Sena had fought the assembly polls together and won an absolute majority.
Shiv Sena had been insisting on chief minister`s post for the two-and-a-half-years but BJP said there was no such understanding.
The Shiv Sena is engaged in parleys with the Nationalist Congress Party and the Congress to form a non-BJP government.
Winter session of Parliament will be beginning from Monday. It comes days after relations between Shiv Sena and BJP worsened over government formation in Maharashtra.
The Shiv Sena and the BJP, who had fought the Maharashtra Assembly polls together, could not form the government due to differences over power-sharing.
With no party or alliance presenting a letter of majority, Maharashtra Governor imposed President`s rule in the state.