Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut said on Sunday that the nation was heading towards a "fractured mandate" and that Prime Minister Narendra Modi was responsible for it.
Sanjay Raut, the executive editor of the Shiv Sena's mouthpiece ''Saamana'', also wrote in his Sunday column that PM Modi's stature has "declined" while that of Congress president Rahul Gandhi has risen.
The Sena leader wrote that in 2014 there was a wave in PM Modi's support because the voters were determined to defeat Congress but "the picture has changed today". "PM Modi's larger-than-life image has lost the shine now. Rahul Gandhi's leadership is not as towering as his. He has gained importance because people are disappointed with the current government," he said.
"While senior leaders in the BJP are worried about its possible poor performance in coming elections, Nitin Gadkari's statements are an indication of the way winds are blowing. A leader like Gadkari has equal acceptance in the RSS as well as among other BJP leaders. Political conspiracies" were hatched to deny Gadkari a second term when he was the BJP president (from 2009 to 2013)," Sanjay Raut claimed.