Dalit party upset with Sena-BJP in Maharashtra
Submitted by admin4 on 17 March 2012 - 7:42pm
Mumbai : Barely a month after the civic elections in Maharashtra,
cracks seemed to have appeared in the Republican Party of India's
(RPI) ties with the Shiv Sena-Bharatiya Janata Party (SS-BJP)
alliance, sources said Saturday.
Stung by the denial of a Rajya Sabha nomination to RPI chief Ramdas
Athavale, the party has decided to discard all the alliance posts
allotted to it by the SS-BJP as a mark of protest by the Dalits, a
party leader said.
The Sena recently announced the nomination of Anil Desai as a Rajya
Sabha candidate, rejecting former Lok Sabha speaker Manohar Joshi. The
RPI hoped its nominee would be accommodated in place of Joshi.
"We have never sought a Rajya Sabha nomination, but we were expecting
it since we have wholeheartedly contributed to the SS-BJP's victory in
Mumbai, Thane and its good showing in other parts of the state," said
party spokesperson Arun Dangle.
RPI legislator Sumantrao Gaekwad asserted that the party would
continue to remain with the SS-BJP alliance despite the denial of a
Rajya Sabha ticket.
"Our aim was not to secure a Rajya Sabha ticket, but to trounce the
ruling Congress-Nationalist Congress Party, not only in the recent
civic elections, but also in the forthcoming 2014 assembly elections,"
Gaekwad said, at a joint media interaction here with Dangle.
The RPI had decided to discard all the alliance posts allotted to it
by the SS-BJP, Dangle said.
He added that Athavale would shortly meet Shiv Sena chief Bal
Thackeray and executive president Uddhav Thackeray in this regard.
The RPI leaders claimed that the RPI's support had widened the support
base of the SS-BJP in the recent civic elections all over Maharashtra.
However, they pointed out that barring Mumbai, the RPI nominees did
not get the advantage of SS-BJP votes in any other civic body in the
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