Earlier it was predicted that Gadkari, who played an active role Maharashtra politics, may become the CM. BJP President Amit Shah sudden meeting with Gadkari following assembly election results paved the speculation. However, party insiders later ruled out such speculations saying that Gadkari was not in the race.
Here it can be recalled that Gadkari himself, during an interview with a TV channel, asserted that he would not come back to state politics. He would likely to continue as the Union Minister of Road Transport and Highways of India.
State BJP leader pitched for Nitin Gadkari as Maharashtra CM
Meanwhile, the name of BJP's Maharashtra chief Devendra Fadnavis emerged as the front runner for the Chief Minister's post overcoming challenge from other veterans including Eknath Khadse and Vinod Tawde.
In the 288-member Maharashtra Assembly, BJP has won 123 seats, 22 short of a majority. Sena, which has emerged the second largest, bagged 63 seats. NCP with 41 has already decided to extend outside support to BJP.
BJP may elect its leader and form a government and prove its majority on the floor of the House with a simple majority from the MLAs present with NCP abstaining. This option, party insiders say, will help maintain dignity as it will not have to seek the support of NCP as some of its leaders are facing corruption allegations.
Meanwhile, sources claimed that BJP leaders are not going to give in to Shiv Sena's demands or arm-twisting if they decide to go together in government formation in the state. And if this were to happen, it has to be unconditional from the Uddhav Thackeray-led party.