Sena may take 'independent' stand, pitches for RSS boss
The Shiv Sena, ruling partner of the BJP at the Centre and in Maharashtra, today said it may take an "independent" stand in the presidential election.
The pro-Hindutva party also said it would continue to press for the candidature of RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat for the highest office.
"We may take an independent stand over casting our vote in the upcoming presidential election. We have time and again reiterate that we do not find anyone other than (RSS chief) Mohan Bhagwat more capable of fulfilling the Hindu rashtra (nation) dream," Sena spokesperson Sanjay Raut said.
The party will continue to suggest Bhagwat's name till the end, Raut, also Rajya Sabha MP, told reporters here.
Despite being the oldest ally, Shiv Sena hadembarrassed BJP in the 2012 presidential poll by backing the UPA candidate Pranab Mukherjee while the saffron party supported P A Sangma for the post.
In 2007 also, the Sena ignored NDA's presidential candidate Bhairon Singh Shekhawat and instead voted for UPA candidate and Congress leader Pratibha Patil. Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray had met Prime Minister Narendra Modi in April and termed him an "elder brother", signalling a thaw in the frosty ties between the two saffron allies.