Differences between the Shiv Sena (Shinde faction) and the BJP have begun to emerge. The rift, which initially started with a BJP office bearer being booked for molestation charges earlier this week, escalated after the local BJP demanded the transfer of the police officer and later decided to boycott the Shiv Sena in a meeting on Thursday.
In response to the decision, CM Eknath Shinde's son and Lok Sabha MP from Kalyan, Dr. Shrikant Shinde, offered to resign on Friday.
Tension regarding 'Election head'
Another reason for the increasing tension between the two parties in the ruling alliance is the announcement of "Election Heads" by state BJP President Chandrashekhar Bawankule on Thursday. Bawankule announced the election heads for all 48 Lok Sabha and 288 assembly constituencies in the state. Although he clarified that the election heads would also work for Shiv Sena candidates, the move conveyed a wrong message. Additionally, the Shiv Sena leadership is unhappy with Bawankule's announcement that the upcoming elections will be contested under the leadership of Devendra Fadnavis.
The speculations about NCP's Ajit Pawar and 40 other MLAs potentially joining the BJP last month had already sparked discomfort within the Shiv Sena Shinde faction regarding the BJP. The mutual discomfort has been growing since then.