The meeting of ruling Shiv Sena’s top brass leader Sanjay Raut with the BJP leader and former Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis yesterday has set off a huge buzz.
The meeting happened at a luxury hotel in the western suburbs of Mumbai.
However, both the leaders have denied any political connection of the meeting.
The meeting is significant as both the parties, which were in alliance till last elections have locked horn on Sushant Singh Rajput’s death case followed by actress Kangana Ranaut’s office demolition.
Confirming the meeting, Sanjay Raut said it was for an interview for the Shiv Sena mouthpiece –Saamana — which he is in charge of. Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray was aware of it, he contended.
“Devendra Fadnavis is not our enemy. We have worked with him. I met Fadnavis for his interview for Saamna. This was a pre-decided meeting. Even Uddhav Thackeray was aware of this,” Mr Raut told reporters.
“Is it a crime to meet Fadnavis, who is a former chief minister and now the Opposition leader in the state Assembly? We have ideological differences but we are not enemies,” he added.
Maharashtra BJP chief spokesperson Keshav Upadhye posted on social media that there was no political angle to the meeting.
“Raut wanted to interview Fadnavis for Saamana and this meeting was to discuss how to go about it,” he tweeted.
“Fadnavis informed Raut that he would grant him the interview after returning from the Bihar poll campaign,” Upadhye said.
'सामना'च्या मुलाखतीसाठी मी देवेंद्र फडणवीस यांना भेटलो, ही गुप्त भेट नव्हती. राज्याचे माजी मुख्यमंत्री,विधानसभेचे विरोधी पक्ष नेते म्हणून देवेंद्र फडणवीस यांच्या मुलाखतीसाठी ही भेट होती- खा.संजय राऊत @abpmajhatv @rautsanjay61 @Dev_Fadnavis
— Vedant Neb (@NebVedant) September 26, 2020
Both the parties had parted ways post-Maharashtra Assembly polls result in which BJP (105) and the Sena (56) collectively won 161 seats in the 288-member House.
BJP and Shiv Sena were unable to bury their differences over power-sharing, a delay.
Raut continued taking sharp barbs at the BJP, Devendra Fadnavis exuded confidence that the impasse will end soon and a new government will be in place.