After Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray's 'future friend' remark for Union Minister and senior BJP leader Raosaheb Danve stirred political speculations, Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut said that the party is not going anywhere. "We need to understand what the Chief Minister said," he said while attempting to clarify the remark passed by Thackeray, who is also the chief of the party.
"He meant to say that some people from BJP might come to Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA). We won't go anywhere," said Raut while speaking to reporters on Friday in Mumbai.
The Shiv Sena MP further said, "Those who were on stage and the Bharatiya Janata Party people who say that they should not be called ex-ministers can go to any one of the three parties of the Maha Vikas Aghadi."
Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Friday addressed the leaders including Union minister Raosaheb Danve at a function as former and possible "future colleagues", leading to speculation as to whether a political realignment was in the offing in the state.
The Thackeray-led Shiv Sena parted ways with the BJP after the 2019 Assembly polls and formed a government with the NCP and Congress.
Addressing the dignitaries on the dais at a function, Thackeray said, "My former, current, and if we come together, future colleagues."
Danve, a BJP leader from Maharashtra, was present, so was senior state minister Balasaheb Thorat of Congress.
Speaking to reporters later, Danve said Thackeray must have had some experience after working with the NCP and Congress for the last two years, making him rethink his decision to sever ties with the BJP.
"Shiv Sena and BJP were in alliance for 25-30 years. All of a sudden the Sena left us and joined the Congress and NCP. Actually, the mandate was for the Shiv Sena and BJP alliance," he said.
"This government has completed two years and the chief minister might have had some experience. Out of this experience, he might have spoken such things," the BJP leader said.
Later, speaking to reporters at another event, Thackeray clarified that he said former and current colleagues because there were leaders from all parties on the dais.
"If everybody comes together, they can become future colleagues too. Time will tell," he added cryptically.
Reacting to Thackeray's remarks, BJP leader Devendra Fadnavis told reporters elsewhere that he must have realized that the state was suffering because of the Sena's "unnatural alliance" with the NCP and Congress.
"He must have expressed his thoughts after realizing what kind of people he is working with. Everything is possible in politics, but the state BJP is not eyeing power. We are an efficient opposition party and will continue our work," the former chief minister added.
Thackeray's remark came at a public event in Aurangabad.
Over the reported statement of Danve planning to meeting the party chief, Raut clarified that some railway projects are pending in the state which come under the purview of Danve, who is the Union Minister of state for Railways, Coal and Mines.
"Danve is our friend and a Union Minister. In Maharashtra, there are a lot of railways projects pending. If the Chief Minister has called him, then he should go and talk. It is important to have good relations with the Centre," said Raut.
(With inputs from ANI and PTI)