Sources say in light of closely-contested poll, it will have to work closely with NDA members.
Mumbai: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) may have to work towards creating cordial ties with the Shiv Sena and other National Democratic Alliance (NDA) allies for the 2019 state elections in the wake of the closely-contested Gujarat elections whose results came on Monday, said BJP sources. The BJP, whose victory on Monday was not exactly a cakewalk, will find it difficult to maintain a harmonious equation with the Sena as the latter may get more aggressive now, sources said. The BJP will now rely more on cooperation with the Sena than combat.
After coming to power after the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, the BJP captured 19 states, including Uttar Pradesh where it enjoyed a thumping victory. In last three to four years, the BJP has not had good relations with NDA allies and turned to those parties only for the Presidential and Vice-Presidential elections only. The Shiv Sena, which was with the BJP for 25 years, parted ways with the latter before the state Assembly elections in 2014.
Now, with the Congress is re-emerging as a force to be reckoned with, there will be a triangular fight in the state in the 2019 elections, if BJP and Shiv Sena do not come together, sources said.
There is a group of BJP leaders who favour alliance with Sena for the Lok Sabha elections and other group that wants to contest the elections without it.
A source said, “Shiv Sena is aware that the BJP will use it to come to power in the 2019 elections and discard it ahead of the Assembly elections. So the Sena will not respond to calls for an alliance and will continue to attack the BJP to gain strength. Now, the BJP may need to consolidate the support of NDA. This is the message of Gujarat election results, party sources added.
“The flow of Congress and Nationalist Congress Party leaders to the BJP at the time of elections may be change and unhappy leaders in the BJP may opt to join Congress or Sena. BJP leaders are unhappy due to the leaders who have been imported into the party,” a source said.