In a major setback to the Shiv Sena-Bharatiya Janata Party alliance ahead of the Maharashtra assembly polls slated for October 21, as many as 26 of Shiv Sena corporators from Kalyan East constituency and around 300 party workers have sent their resignation to party chief Uddhav Thackeray.
Supporting the rebel Shiv Sena candidate, Dhananjay Bodare, those who tendered their resignation were miffed over the Kalyan East seat falling into the BJP's quota.
Shiv Sena and BJP are contesting the Maharashtra assembly polls in alliance. Among the corporators who have resigned, 16 are from Kalyan Dombivali Municipal Corporation while 10 are from Ulhasnagar Municipal Corporation.
Though both BJP and Shiv Sena are claiming that everything is alright within their respective parties, there are several rebel candidates from both parties in different constituencies in Maharashtra.
"We have resigned from the party so that our senior leaders from Shiv Sena do not face an embarrassing situation. As they have already announced an alliance and have appealed to support the alliance candidate who is from BJP, which we cannot to do and hence decided to resign. We have sent out resignations to Uddhav ji, Guardian Minister Eknath Shinde and local MP Shrikant Shinde ji," said Sharad Patil, Shasnyojak of Shivsena from Kalyan.
The rebel candidate Dhananjay Badore said: "I have decided to contest polls as an independent candidate because in the last 10 years there is no development in our area and people are just suffering, we cannot accept BJP candidate as our MLA and hence I am contesting against him ."
On the other hand, Uddhav Thackeray has issued several appeals to the rebel candidates of his party contesting against BJP candidates, after which some have taken their nominations.
Uddhav Thackeray had apologised at the Dussehra rally to all his party workers those who could not get tickets and appealed them to support the alliance candidates.
As per the seat-sharing pact between BJP and Shiv Sena, BJP will be contesting on 150 seats while Shiv Sena on 124 constituencies in the assembly elections in Maharashtra. Other allies have got 14 seats.
Maharashtra, which has a 288-member assembly, will go to polls on October 21, while the counting of votes will take place on October 24.