Mumbai: In the run up to the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) polls due next year, the BJP has decided to retain its Mumbai unit chief Ashish Shelar.
"Every party has the right to strengthen and widen its base. BJP too wants power in BMC. At such a time, the party will need an aggressive leader and Shelar fulfils that criteria. Thus, he would be given a second opportunity to bring the BJP to power in the civic body with a majority," BJP spokesperson Atul Shah said today.
BJP will hold a formal meeting in Central Mumbai on Tuesday to elect the party president of the city.
According to sources, Mr Shelar, keen to become a minister in the state cabinet, was not much interested to work on the same post.
However, addressing the media last week, Mr Shelar clarified that he would abide by the party decision, whatever it be.
Miffed with the Shiv Sena's repeated criticism of the BJP over a host of issues, Mr Shelar had recently openly targeted Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray and the party's mouthpiece 'Saamna'.
He had threatened that copies of 'Saamna' could be burnt by BJP cadres if Shiv Sena continues mocking BJP president Amit Shah and Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Meanwhile, state unit BJP president Raosaheb Danve said the decision of an alliance with the Shiv Sena for BMC polls would be taken at an appropriate time.