Posters have emerged in the Worli suburb of Mumbai calling Shiv Sena MLA Aaditya Thackeray as the "future chief minister" of Maharashtra.
The Shiv Sena had campaigned on the platform of making a party MLA the chief minister even as it continued its alliance with the BJP. Aaditya, the first member of the Bal Thackeray family to contest elections, won his maiden poll from Worli by over 67,000 votes as the BJP-Shiv Sena alliance comfortably breached the majority mark in the 288-member Assembly.
Various media outlets reported on the posters even as the Shiv Sena had called for implementation of a '50:50' formula of rotating the chief minister's post with the BJP through the five-year term. The Shiv Sena had repeatedly projected Aaditya as a prospective chief minister even as the BJP had publicly refrained from commenting on it.
On Thursday, Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray, who is also Aaditya's father, called on the BJP to adhere to the 50:50 proposal that the parties had purportedly agreed on. Interestingly, media reports have claimed the NCP and Congress had offered support for the Shiv Sena to claim the chief minister's post, but the party had not commented on it.
On Friday morning, the editorial of Saamana, the Shiv Sena mouthpiece, declared the electoral verdict was a “rap on the knuckles” to those who were high on “arrogance of power”.
Saamana claimed the mandate had rejected the notion that elections can be swept by engineering defections and splitting opposition parties. Over 30 leaders of the NCP and Congress had crossed over to the BJP and Shiv Sena before the Assembly polls.
Saamana claimed said the "BJP broke the NCP" in such a manner in run-up to elections that people wondered if Sharad Pawar's party had any future.
"But the NCP bounced back crossing the 50-seat mark, while a leaderless Congress won 44 seats. The results were a warning to rulers not to show arrogance of power... its a rap on their knuckles," Saamana declared.
"The BJP tally came down from 122 (in 2014) to 105 (in 2019), whereas the Shiv Sena's tally also saw a decrease (from 63 to 56). Twenty-five seats have gone to other smaller parties. This shows people have said beware... if you show arrogance of power...," the editorial said.
(With PTI inputs)