Mumbai, Jun 6: Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) president Amit Shah on Wednesday met sulking ally Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray at Matoshree, in the party’s new initiative ‘Sampark for Samarthan’ prior to the 2019 Lok Sabha elections. Shah and Thackeray were closeted along for over two hours amid intense political speculation outside. Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, who accompanied Shah till reaching Matoshree, was not present in the meeting.Also Read - BJP Would Remain at Centre of Indian Politics For Years to Come: Prashant Kishor's Latest Comments
While BJP leaders maintained that the meeting between Amit Shah and Uddhav Thackeray was positive, sources said the talks remained inconclusive. The BJP chief tried to mollify Thackeray and convince him to support the BJP and Prime Minister Narendra Modi in future elections, the latter is understood to have flagged several issued including complaints against CM Devendra Fadnavis. Despite some assurance from Shah, Thackeray refused to rethink on contesting elections separately. Also Read - 16 Houses Gutted, Over 150 People Rendered Homeless in Fire in Himachal’s Malana Village
Incidentally, hours before the meeting, the Sena – through its mouthpieces “Saamana” and “Dopahar Ka Saamana” – questioned what the BJP hoped to achieve by the ‘Sampark for Samarthan’ and reiterated it would go solo in future. In the recent past, differences have cropped up in the BJP-Shiv Sena alliance in Maharashtra. In this regard, Fadnavis clarified that although there was no plan to dissolve the alliance, mutual efforts were essential for sustaining ties. Also Read - He Can Get Me Shot, Says Bihar CM Nitish Kumar on Lalu Prasad Yadav's 'Visarjan' Claim
Earlier in the day, Shah and Fadnavis separately met industrialist Ratan Tata, and actress Madhuri Dixit and her husband Sriram Madhav Nene. However, a scheduled meeting with Lata Mangeshkar was cancelled at the last minute since she was indisposed. Shah apprised the celebrities of the work done by Modi and his team in the last four years, the NDA government’s achievements and their vision for India.
As part of ‘Sampark for Samarthan’, Shah has so far met former Indian Army chief Dalbir Singh Suhag, scholar and former Lok Sabha Secretary General Subhash Kashyap and former Team Indian skipper and legendary all-rounder Kapil Dev, retired Chief Justice of India R.C. Lahoti, and yoga guru Baba Ramdev.