The stalemate over government formation in Maharashtra ended on expected lines with the Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari recommending President’s Rule on November 12 and the Centre endorsing it. This is nothing but a shameless betrayal of the popular mandate. And the Shiv Sena is solely responsible for this betrayal of the people’s verdict.
The people of Maharashtra have voted for the BJP-Shiv Sena alliance and gave them full majority mandate to rule for another five years for the development of the state. But, the Shiv Sena with its overambitious and stubborn attitude insulted and betrayed that mandate.
In the process, the Shiv Sena has snapped off three-decades old partnership with its ally BJP. Not only this, to fulfill the ‘promise’ Uddhav Thackeray claims to have given to his father about making a ‘Shiv Sainik’ Chief Minister of the state, it has chosen to align with its ideological opponents like the Congress and the NCP. This is the dirtiest part by any standard. With this the Shiv Sena has begun its downward slide ideologically and politically too. This made everyone who supported and voted for the Shiv Sena feel betrayed, let down and stabbed in the back.
Given the political turmoil in the state, the Shiv Sena is sure to play its role in the formation of the government, which it is playing may continue to play in the future (as the parties are given a six-month time by the Governor). But the developments till this moment have proved what the Shiv Sena did was surely against the ideology and character induced by its founder Bal Thackeray. Though he faced tough times during its journey, he never compromised on the ideological and philosophical fronts and never bowed to the secular pressures.
But the present leadership has shown its willingness for taking the support of the Congress and NCP that are fiercely opposed to the Hindutva ideology. Because of this, the people in general have felt that the Sena had betrayed them by aligning with the anti-Hindutva parties. The idea of Shiv Sena flirting and romancing with parties vehemently opposed to its ideology is not taken easily by the people. But the Sena seems to be ignorant of this simmering public discontent against its hunger for power sans enough numbers.
As soon as the election results were declared and it was clear that the BJP was far behind to form the government on its own, the Shiv Sena decided to grab this opportunity and raised its demand for the post of chief minister. As BJP President Amit Shah clearly said that the Sena had not contradicted the public statements made by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Shah himself and chief minister Devendra Fadnavis during the election campaign that Fadnavis would be chief minister had the BJP-SS alliance won. Now that some new terms are being raised, the BJP has some reservations and the conditions raised by the Shiv Sena leaders are not acceptable to us, Shah had said clearly putting the onus of breaking the alliance on the Shiv Sena.
The Shiv Sena has come too far from its three-decade old ally to join the strange bedfellowship with the Congress and NCP which were on its radar since long and the Sena had not spared any opportunity to call names to these parties. Now, suddenly they have become ‘holy cows’ for them. The Shiv Sena has only one aim to make a ‘Shiv Sainik’—the most inexperienced and political novice Aditya Thackeray its Chief Minister.
This is most unfortunate as the entire conduct of Shiv Sena has shown a terrible downslide on its ideological and philosophical planes. This slide would surely take the Sena towards no-redemption low making it extremely difficult for them to compromise with their new secular partners who are cleverer and politically mature.
The entire conduct of Shiv Sena ‘Pramukh’ Uddhav Thackeray (because he is the only leader in the party and rest are ‘jee hujurs’) can best be compared with that of ‘Dhritrashtra’ of Mahabharata who, in his quest to make his son Duryodhana ‘samrat’ of Bharatvarsha invited a total doom of his clan. Uddhav seems to be exactly treading the ‘Dhritrashtra path’ blinded by his unstoppable desire to make his son Aditya chief minister of Maharashtra.
The people are the SUPREME in democracy. They have voted the saffron alliance to power in Maharashtra. The same people are now feeling terribly let down by the power-hungry and immature and most irresponsible leadership of the Shiv Sena. The dirty game the Sena leaders are indulging in, shows how they have reduced themselves to a small time ‘dalals’ who are willing to part with valued treasure for petty gains. No political party would behave the way Shiv Sena is, Sena Pramukh Uddhav Thackeray and his ‘eyes, ears and voice’ Sanjay Raut is behaving. There may be people in the Shiv Sena who might have detested this behaviour of their leaders but their voice is currently very feeble.
However, one thing is certain and beyond doubt that the Shiv Sena has betrayed the popular mandate, and for this, they will not be pardoned by the people who are the SUPREME in democracy.