Finalising the seat-sharing formula, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, on Friday, declared that Shiv Sena will contest for polls from 124 constituencies, the BJP will contest from 150 and its allies will contest from 14 constituencies, at a joint press conference in Mumbai. Fadnavis also announced that all BJP allies will fight the elections under the BJP's symbol. The press briefing was chaired by the Chief Minister and the Shiv Sena Supremo Uddhav Thackeray. The Shiv Sena chief also dispelled rumours of Aaditya being considered as a Chief Ministerial candidate.
"Our allies are contesting in 14 constituencies. Shiv Sena is fighting in 124 constituencies and in the remaining seats we (BJP) are contesting. This is our seat-sharing formula," said Fadnavis. He also added, "I am confident the Aaditya Thackeray will win by a very huge margin in the elections and we will see him with us in the Assembly."
Earlier on October 1, BJP released its first list of candidates for the upcoming Assembly polls. Fadnavis will be contesting the upcoming Maharashtra Assembly elections from the Nagpur South West seat, which he has held since its inception in 2009. In its first list, the BJP had replaced 12 names of sitting MLAs, while 52 incumbent MLAs have been repeated. Further, the party had included 12 women in the first list of 125 candidates. As of Friday, BJP has released its final list of candidates contesting on all 150 seats.
Maharashtra which has 288 Assembly seats will go to polls in 21 October 2019. Maharashtra assembly elections will be held in a single-phase and the counting procedure would be conducted on October 24. The last date of nomination is on October 4. EC informed that the parties in Maharashtra had wanted the polls to be concluded by Dhanteras.
Currently, the BJP holds 122 seats while the Shiv Sena holds 63 seats and the Opposition held by UPA has 42 seats. In 2014 elections, the Shiv Sena and the BJP had contested the assembly elections separately. The seat-sharing talks between the two parties collapsed at the last moment in 2014. The two parties came together after the elections to form the government with BJP winning 122 seats and Shiv Sena with 63.
The major twist in this election is that Yuva Sena president Aaditya Thackeray will be contesting polls from Worli. He is the first Thackeray to contest for Assembly polls. While there was growing clamour amongst Shiv Sainiks for Aaditya to be CM, Home Minister Amit Shah and Fadnavis have reaffirmed -'Fadnavis will be CM again'. Earlier in May, the BJP-Shiv Sena alliance won 41 seats while the UPA was reduced to merely 5 seats.