Bal Thackerays no to alliance with MNS

Mumbai: Scotching speculation of any alliance between the Shiv Sena-BJP and Raj Thackeray-led Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS), Sena chief Bal Thackeray on Tuesday said there was no need for a "third one" in the combine.

"The Sena-BJP alliance was formed on the issue of Hindutva and we have fought strongly against many who came in the way. Our alliance is the only answer for all problems of Maharashtra and there is no need for a third one," Thackeray said in an editorial in the party mouthpiece `Saamana`.

There were reports in the media that the Sena-BJP may go with the MNS in the Mumbai Municipal Corporation polls scheduled next year. MNS chief Raj`s courtesy visit to state BJP office last year had sparked the reports.

Asked about the reports, BJP spokesperson Ravi Shankar Prasad had said on Sunday that the decision about forging an alliance with any other party would be taken at the national level.

Senior BJP leader and MP Gopinath Munde had expressed the possibility of the party joining hands with MNS, saying such an alliance can bring down Congress-NCP ruling Government in the state. He was speaking in the context of MNS dividing votes of the saffron alliance during last Assembly polls which could be avoided with the new formula.

Commenting on Munde`s proposal, Thackeray said, "We have a special affection for Munde and he may be having a national perspective while working at the national level. But still we believe in the `family planning` formula of one or two is enough."

Thackeray said the Sena-BJP alliance was doing very well in the state and some people were deliberately spreading rumours about a rift between them.

Both parties may not agree on all issues but continuing the ties for 22 years is not an easy job. This is not liked by the opponents and they try to create fissures, he said.

Thackeray said the Sena never thought of any self interest or gain in politics. The Sena-BJP strong alliance on Hindutva issue was created in presence of leaders like A B Vajpayee, L K Advani and Pramod Mahajan, he said.

Now only Advani is active in politics and the BJP’s leadership is in the hands of a new generation, he noted.

"We are happy that Nitin Gadkari and Munde from Maharashtra are leading figures in BJP’s national politics. But it is also a fact that Sena-BJP alliance in Maharashtra and BJP-Akali Dal alliance in Punjab are the root of the National Democratic Alliance," he said.