Raj Thackeray-led MNS likely to contest 100 seats in upcoming Maharashtra assembly elections

The Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) has finally decided to contest the upcoming elections, the party is likely to contest around 100 seats. The development came after a meeting of party leaders on Friday called by chief Raj Thackeray.

According to the Hindustan Times, MNS will be concentrating on cities such as Mumbai, Thane, Nashik, and Pune, where it has been receiving significant support since its formation. There are indications that there may an informal alliance with the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP). Addressing the media, MNS leader Bala Nandgaonkar said a majority of the leaders wanted the MNS to enter the electoral fray. “It will be conveyed to Rajsaheb. However, the leaders were clear that they will abide by whatever decision he takes,” said Nandgaonkar. “There are differences of opinion in every party.”

The development is significant as Raj was not keen on contesting the assembly polls in Maharashtra and had called for a boycott of the assembly polls till the Election Commission agreed to conduct the assembly polls in the state with ballot papers instead of EVM machines. Raj had met NCP Chief Sharad Pawar and other opposition leaders with the idea of a boycott of the assembly polls claiming that the polls held under EVM machines were managed to favour the BJP. However other opposition parties in the state were not keen to boycott the polls.