Sena not in politics of trade, will declare stand once no oneelse forms govt: Raut

Sena not in politics of trade, will declare stand once no oneelse forms govt: Raut (Adding details) Mumbai, Nov 10 (PTI) Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut onSunday said his party would declare its next strategy once noone else is able to form government in Maharashtra, andasserted that politics was not a trade for his party.

Without taking name of any individual or party, hesaid the bubble of being 'invincible' has burst and thearrogance of 'buying' a politician to form government will nolonger work in the state.

The Shiv Sena 'will step in' ifno one formsgovernment, Raut told reporters here.

He also welcomed the decision of Governor Bhagat SinghKoshyari to invite the BJP to form government in the state.

'I welcome the governor's decision to invite the BJP.

The single largest party had to be called. We fail tounderstand why the BJP did not stake claim in 24 hours (afterresults) if it was confident that it had the majority,' theRajya Sabha member said.

'I don't think the BJP has enough strength to stakeclaim for government formation...I am told the governor hasasked the BJP to inform him about its decision by 8 pm onNovember 11,' he said.

On the Sena's future course of action, he said, 'Letthe picture be clear on the first step by governor. The ShivSena will declare its strategy if no one else is able to formthe government.' He said Sena president Uddhav Thackeray will bemeeting the party MLAs at 12.30 pm on Sunday.

'He is meeting as a routine. We will see how the dayprogresses,' said the Rajya Sabha member.

The BJP won 105 seats in the October 21 elections,while the majority mark in the 288-member Assembly is 145.

Its ally Shiv Sena won 56 seats, but the two partiesare bickering over the chief minister's post.

Asked if the Shiv Sena has entered into a 'deal' withthe Congress and NCP, Raut said, 'We are not traders to makedeals. Politics is not a trade for the Shiv Sena. 'Profit' and'loss' (words) are not in our dictionary.' He also dismissed the possibility of legislatorsswitching sides.

'I don't think MLAs of any party would defect. Ifanyone tries to split another party for government formation,I don't think it will work this time,' he said.

'The arrogance of buying any politician and form agovernment will no longer work in this state. The bubble ofbeing invincible has burst,' Raut said.

On posters put up by Sena workers near Thackeray'sresidence here demanding that he be the chief minister, Rautsaid, 'Uddhav Thackeray is the Shiv Sena leader and he willtake an appropriate decision at the right time. He has alreadysaid he will make a Shiv Sainikthe CM.' When a reporter pointed out that the Sena was notcriticising the opposition NCP in the wake of a possiblealliance between the two parties, Raut said, 'We have notcriticised the BJP either. The election campaign is over andthings said during the campaign are irrelevant.' On if the Congress will support the Shiv Sena to formgovernment, Raut said the Sonia Gandhi-led party is 'not enemyof Maharashtra'.

'If Congress leaders have taken any decision to ensurea stable government in Maharashtra, we welcome it,' he said.

Every political party has differences with the otherparty. Like, the Sena and BJP differ on the issue of borderdispute between Maharashtra and Karnataka over Belagavi(Belgaum) district, Raut said.

'We always expected a strong stand of the BJP onBelagavi district with its counterpart (BJP) in the Karnatakagovernment. At the same time, there are some leaders in theCongress and NCP who identify themselves with the Sena's standon this border dispute issue,' he said.

Maharashtra claims Belgaum, part of the erstwhileBombay Presidency but currently a district of Karnataka, onlinguistic grounds.

Raut also welcomed the Supreme Court's verdict thatcleared the way for construction of a Ram Temple at thedisputed site in Ayodhya.

'People waited for a long time for this decision,' headded. PTI ND MRGK GK