The BJP and Shiv Sena have come together again for the upcoming Lok Sabha Elections and the Aseembly Polls in Maharashtra.

This was announced on Monday by sitting Chief Minister of Maharashtra Devendra Fadnavis.

Fadnavis also said that the BJP will contest 25 seats while Shiv Sena will contest the remaining 23 seats.

The announcement was made at a joint press conference in Mumbai with BJP President Amit Shah and Shiv Sena Chief Uddhav Thakeray also attending the event.

When asked about the division of seats for the Assembly Polls, Fadnavis replied that the BJP and Shiv Sena will contest an equal number of seats(144 each).

Thackeray was reported saying, “Ram temple has been the common thread for alliance between the BJP and Shiv Sena, it has to be built at the earliest.”

Fadnavis also said the BJP was in full support for the demand of the Ram Temple in Ayodhya and said, “BJP and Sena are parties with national ideology which have come together in wider public interest. In principle, both the parties are pro-Hindutva.”

BJP Amit Shah also told the media that crore of party workers from both BJP and Shiv Sena have been wanting the alliance between the two parties as “Sena is the oldest ally of BJP,”.

This move comes after the open opposition of Shiv Sena of many steps taken by the BJP government including demonetisation.

The Shiv Sena had earlier last week laid down three demands for the BJP for an alliance, 100 per cent loan waver for farmers, complete property tax waiver on houses measuring less than 500 sq ft in Mumbai and Thane, and the controversial Ram Temple in Ayodhya. There is also a condition that the next Chief Minister should be from the Shiv Sena but sources report that the parties have yet to come to an agreement about this.

With the opposition looking to include the Shiv Sena in its alliance against the BJP, this will come as a huge blow for the 2019 Lok Sabha Elections.