‘Devendra Fadnavis will vote for Shiv Sena if…’: Sanjay Raut’s dig at BJP

New Delhi: On his party’s candidate Sanjay Pawar facing defeat from the sixth seat in the Maharashtra Rajya Sabha election, Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut on Sunday (June 12) took a jibe at the BJP and said even saffron party leader Devendra Fadnavis will vote for the Uddhav Thackeray-led party if the control of the Enforcement Directorate (ED) is given to their party. “If the ED’s control is given to us for two days, then Devendra Fadnavis too will vote for us,” PTI quoted Raut as saying. The Shiv Sena chief spokesperson’s statement comes in the wake of the BJP bagging three out of the six seats in the Maharashtra Rajya Sabha polls 2022. 

Fadnavis, former Maharashtra chief minister and the leader of opposition in the state Assembly, has been credited for the BJP’s victory on the sixth Rajya Sabha seat, wherein saffron party nominee Dhananjay Mahadik bested Shiv Sena’s Sanjay Pawar.

Ahead of the Maharashtra Rajya Sabha polls, Raut had alleged that the BJP was using central agencies to pressurise independents and smaller parties to vote for the saffron party candidates. It was the independents and smaller parties, some of whom had vowed to back Sena, that played a crucial role in the BJP’s victory.

In the Maharashtra Rajya Sabha polls 2022, Union Minister Piyush Goyal, former state minister Anil Bonde and Dhananjay Mahadik from the BJP secured victory while one candidate each from Shiv Sena, Congress and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP)— Sanjay Raut, Imran Pratapgarhi and Praful Patel— bagged an easy victory. As many as 285 votes were polled on Friday and candidates required 41 votes to win a Rajya Sabha seat. 

On Saturday, Raut had called the BJP’s victory on three Rajya Sabha seats in the state the “mandate of horse-trading”. Further, he had accused the Election Commission (EC) of favoring BJP, adding that the saffron party “put pressure” on the poll panel. “Some horses were up for sale at a higher price and shifted sides despite assurance of their votes to our candidate,” Raut had said derisively. 

(With agency inputs)

Atul Tiwari

Atul Tiwari

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