A list of episodes in 2015 that highlights the strained relationship between the Shiv Sena and the BJP.

Five instances when the Shiv Sena irked the BJPImage source: Shiv Sena, BJP/Facebook
news Monday, October 19, 2015 - 18:40

The tiff between the Shiv Sena and the BJP, two of the oldest saffron parties in the country and allies at the Centre as well as in the Maharashtra government, seems to have grown into a full-blown offensive in the course of this year.

The Sena has been openly countering and challenging the BJP on various issues, irking it sometimes with intent, and at times (seemingly) without.

Here is a list of episodes in 2015 that highlights the strained relationship between the Shiv Sena and the BJP.

Meat ban

In defiance of the Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai's order banning sale of meat during the Jain fasting period of "Pratyushan", the Shiv Sena along with oppostion MNS set up stalls in the city to sell meat, reported PTI.

The BJP government was accused of taking the decision in order to appease the Jain community keeping in mind the MCGM polls in 2017.

Saamana editorial

On the morning of October 12, former BJP member Sudheendra Kulkarni was in his car when Sena workers approached him, made him get out of the car and threw ink on his face.The Sena's attack was a result of Kulkarni not paying heed to the party's demand to cancel the event of a book launch by Khurshid Kasuri, former Pakistani Foreign Minister, in Mumbai on that very morning.

Condemning the attack on Kulkarni, Maharashtra CM Devendra Fadnavis said that incident had brought disrepute to the state. "We cannot endorse Kasuri, but can't let our state turn into a banana republic," he said.

However, the statement did not go down well with the Sena, which went to the extent of daring the BJP to break the alliance.

"It must be clarified how the Sena has brought Maharashtra into disrepute. Why are we being asked if we will quit the alliance government? If our nationalist approach is stinging you, then you quit the government," Sena's Sanjay Raut told The Hindu.

"It is because of CM’s statement and pro-Pak stand that the State has been defamed," he added.

In a scathing editorial, the report states, in its mouthpiece Saamana the Sena wrote, "An atmosphere has been created where it now seems that [former Pakistan Foreign Minister] Khurshid Mahmud Kasuri is a messenger of peace or a Mahatma and the Sena has committed a crime by opposing him. However much we are criticised and maligned, we will not change our stand against Pakistan."

Opposing Ghulam Ali's concert even after Fadnavis wanted it to be held as scheduled

A ghazal concert of Pakistani singer Ustad Ghulam Ali, which was scheduled to be held on October 9 in Mumbai, was called off earlier this month after the Sena warned that they would "publicly oppose" the function.

The concert had been arranged to commemorate the fourth death anniversary of singer and music composer Jagjit Singh.This, even after Maharashtra CM Devendra Fadnavis had assured protection to Ali's concert and said that there was no need to drag politics into culture.

Akshay Bardapurkar of the Sena's film wing, Chitrapat Sena, told TOI, "Although the concert is cultural in nature, the neighbouring country to which he (Ali) belongs has for several days been indulging in firing on India's border."

Sena opposes Land Acquisition Bill

Earlier this year, the Sena made it clear that though the BJP and it were allies, it would continue to oppose certain provisions in the government's Land Acquisition Bill. It however said that its decision did not imply that there was a rift between the two parties.

"When I take a certain stand (on policy issues), it does not mean I have raised a banner of revolt (against BJP). I take a certain stand to ensure that expectations of people are fulfilled and people see a visible difference between this and the previous Government," Sena President Uddhav Thackeray is quoted as saying by PTI.

Mocking BJP and Modi for Delhi debacle

Following the BJP’s humiliating defeat in the Delhi Assembly elections earlier this year, Uddhav Thackeray said that Narendra Modi was to blame for the defeat. He even went on to compare the "Modi wave" with the "Delhi tsunami".

“Talks had been going on about a Modi wave sweeping the country. But the people of Delhi have shown that a tsunami is mightier than a wave,” The Indian Express quotes Uddhav Thackeray as saying.

According to DNA, in another stinging editorial in the Saamana, the party wrote "Even booth management, caste equations and full use of power cannot guarantee results as desired. We saw that in Maharashtra three months ago and Delhi totally rejected the power machinations."

Show us some love! Support our journalism by becoming a TNM Member - Click here.