The BJP and Shiv Sena continue to play hardball with the battle of BMC reaching Maharashtra Cabinet and Sena demanding transparent meetings. As the suspense over Mumbai's next Mayor continues, the Shiv Sena yet again hardened its stand against it ally BJP.
On Friday, the BJP and Sena ministers met for the first time after all the mudslinging during the BMC elections. The Cabinet meet witnessed some tense moments as Shiv Sena ministers demanded transparency in meetings on the lines of the BMC.
"The standing committee meeting in BMC is attended by journalists as well. Similarly, in order to bring transparency in the state government functioning, journalists, lokayukta and Opposition leaders should be allowed to attend the cabinet meets," said Eknath Shinde, senior Shiv Sena leader and PWD minister, while talking to reporters after the meeting.
"We still carry our resignation letters in our pockets. It is just about one 'Aadesh' ('order') from Uddhav ji and we will resign. The ministry is nothing in front of his orders," Shinde added.
Apart from Shinde, Diwakar Raote and Deepak Sawant from the Shiv Sena also attended the Cabinet meeting.
Transparency was the key issue that the BJP and particularly Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis raked during his election campaign alleging that the BMC ruled by Shiv Sena lacked transparency. But on Friday, the BJP preferred to downplay the Sena's aggression. "Whatever CM said about transparency, Uddhav ji has gone 2 steps ahead to endorse it which is a sign that we are walking together," quipped Vinod Tawde, Senior BJP leader and Maharashtra Education Minister.
"Shiv Sena ministers raised the issue of transparency in the Cabinet meeting and the CM accepted all the suggestions. Sena leaders also demanded that journalists should be allowed in the Cabinet meeting, to which Law and Judiciary Secretary replied that ministers take an oath of secrecy unlike municipal corporation members; the tendering process too is transparent here. Whatever is legally possible has been promised," informed Tawde.