Mumbai, Sep 27 (IANS) Maharashtra’s ruling Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) allies, the Shiv Sena and the Nationalist Congress Party, on Sunday welcomed the Shiromani Akali Dal’s (SAD) decision to quit the Bharatiya Janata Party-led National Democratic Alliance.
The Punjab-based SAD is the second party – and among the oldest allies – after the Shiv Sena, to have broken ties with the BJP in the past one year.
“Both parties (Shiv Sena and SAD) stood by the BJP through thick and thin, while others have joined when they smelt power. Shiv Sena was forced to quit the NDA last year while Akali Dal has quit over the farm bills. We felt sad over the development,” Shiv Sena chief spokesperson Sanjay Raut said.
NCP President Sharad Pawar said “congratulations” to SAD President Sukhbir Singh Badal, who under the leadership of his father Parkash Singh Badal, pulled out of the NDA.
He also lauded Akali Dal MP Harsimrat Kaur Badal, who quit as Union Minister ahead of voting on the farm bills in the Lok Sabha, for leaving the NDA to protest against the bills and expressed his thanks to them “for firmly standing with the farmers”.
The Congress has also severely criticised the bills that were passed in the parliament last week leading to a furore among farmers all over the country, and is planning more protest agitations, state party chief and Revenue Minister Balasaheb Thorat said on Sunday.
In October 2019, after the results of Maharashtra Assembly polls were announced, the Shiv Sena had broken ranks with the BJP as the latter, which had a higher number of seats, refused to concede the post of Chief Minister.
The Sena also bitterly accused BJP leaders of betraying it after promising to give the post, and later quit the NDA to ally with the NCP and the Congress to form the MVA government in the state.
Raut added that both Shiv Sena and SAD were pillars of the NDA and they are no longer there, the present dispensation cannot be called the NDA anymore.
“This is a different kind of alliance. The Shiv Shiv appreciates Shiromani Akali Dal’s decision to break it’s ties with NDA in the interest of farmers,” Raut tweeted.