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Confident that Shiv Sena and BJP will join hands in Mumbai: BJP minister

LiveMint logoLiveMint 03-03-2017 PTI

Mumbai: With just a day left for filing of nominations for the Mumbai mayoral poll, a senior state Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader on Friday said he is confident that his party and Shiv Sena will come together to govern India’s richest civic body.

“I am 200% sure that BJP and Shiv Sena will join hands in BMC,” Maharashtra’s revenue minister Chandrakant Patil said. “A formula which is acceptable to both the parties will be worked out,” he said.

Patil’s remarks came ahead of a crucial meeting of the state BJP core committee later on Friday where the party is expected to decide its strategy for the mayoral poll. The minister had recently said his party and Shiv Sena are natural allies who should put aside their differences and join hands once again to rule the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), in the backdrop of the election to the civic body throwing up a fractured mandate.

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Patil had also said that there was no threat to the BJP-led government in the state. Suspense has been mounting over who will be the next mayor of Mumbai, with the BJP and Sena eyeing the prestigious post though both the parties do not have majority of their own in the just elected house.

The elections to the 227-member BMC threw up a hung verdict, with the Sena winning 84 seats and the BJP 82. The Congress has said it will contest the mayoral poll in BMC, which has an annual budget of over Rs37,000 crore.

Ahead of the 21 February elections, the BJP and Shiv Sena split in BMC, which they had been ruling together for the last over two decades. However, they continue to be ruling allies at the state level and also at the Centre.

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