Mumbai: The break-up of the Bharatiya Janata Party-Shiv Sena alliance in Maharashtra may have an impact on mayoral polls in Mumbai, slated for November 22, say political experts.
Political experts believe the upcoming polls offer BJP the opportunity to take revenge against the Sena.
Both parties contested the Assembly polls together, winning a simple majority in the recent Assembly election. However, the Sena ditched the saffron alliance over the issue of equal sharing of power and rotational chief ministership.
In the 2017 Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation polls, the Sena won 84 seats. On the other hand, the BJP, contesting on its own for the first time in over three decades, came a close second with 82 seats. Later, six Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) corporators defected to the Shiv Sena, taking its tally to 90.
Being the second largest party, BJP extended its support to the Sena. With BJP's support, Sena managed to win the mayor's post and its leader Vishwanath Mahadesh-war occupied the position for two and a half years.
While Mr Mahedeshwar's term ended in September 2019, he was given an extension keeping the Assembly polls in mind. The state Urban Development department in a lottery fixed that the next mayor would be from the open category.
Meanwhile, BJP's Mumbai unit chief Mangal Prabhat Lodha said that the party has not yet taken a decision on the issue. On the other hand, Samajwadi Party's Rais Shaikh said his party is in talks with the Congress and would soon take a decision.
According to experts, there is a high probability of the statewide scenario repeating in the Asia’s richest civic body too.
This means that the Sharad Pawar-led Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) and the Sonia Gandhi-led Congress, which are currently in talks with the Shiv Sena to form the next government, may back the Uddhav Thackeray-led party in the mayoral elections. In return, political commentators argue, Congress and NCP may ask for posts in different BMC committees. In such situation, BJP will have to seat in the opposition.
While the Congress has 28 corporators, NCP has eight in its kitty. The Samajwadi Party has six members, while All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Musli-meen (AIMIM) and Maharashtra Navnirman Sena have two and one, respectively.