Both rebel leader Eknath Shinde and Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, who are fighting to keep the ruling MVA in power and retake control of the Shiv Sena, went to the state legislature secretariat in Vidhan Bhavan and the Raj Bhavan on Friday to continue their fight. Each claimed his faction was the “real” Shiv Sena.
At Matoshree, the Thackeray family residence, in the evening, NCP leader Sharad Pawar had a protracted discussion with Uddhav. The conversation’s specifics were kept private.
However, NCP sources claimed that they were “not very optimistic” about the Maha Vikas Aghadi administration’s future. Our (MVA) numbers have significantly decreased as a result of more than 40 Shiv Sena members joining the renegade Eknath Shinde’s side. It seems challenging to demonstrate majority on the House floor.
The breakaway MLAs “will have to join with the BJP and their drama will not endure long,” Uddhav later claimed in a speech to Sena MPs. For the elections for civic bodies, he claimed that the Sena was ready. He has scheduled the Sena national executive meeting for Saturday at Sena Bhavan, and he plans to participate virtually.
When the Uddhav faction demanded that 16 party MLAs, including Shinde, be removed from office earlier in the day, the rebels retaliated by questioning the eligibility of Deputy Speaker Narhari Zirwal, an NCP member.
In a letter to Zirwal, independent MLAs Mahesh Baldi (Uran) and Vinod Santosh Agrawal (Gondia) pleaded with him not to act against rebels who are camped in Guwahati. They said that because a resolution calling for the Deputy Speaker’s ouster is still pending, any action taken by him against the dissident MLAs would constitute a violation of constitutional rules.
In the meantime, Governor Bhagat Singh Koshiyari received a letter from the Leader of the Opposition in the Legislative Council of the BJP, Pravin Darekar, stating that 160 resolutions had been passed by Maha Vikas Aghadi leaders in the previous 48 hours. They are clearing the files on an ad hoc basis, which is wrong. Following the mutiny within the Sena that has put the government in a minority, the CM has already announced his willingness to resign.
We have only received two letters thus far, according to a Raj Bhavan officer. Eknath Shinde wrote a letter on Thursday in which he stated that the group had passed a resolution designating Shinde as group leader and Bharat Gogawale as chief whip. We received a letter from the head of the opposition in the state council, Pravin Darekar, on Friday objecting to the MVA government’s leaders clearing files and resolutions. There is no letter from the governing parties, such as the CM or Shiv Sena.
“We state that a notice to move a resolution for Narhari Zirwal’s removal as Deputy Speaker of the state Legislative Assembly, under Article 179 of the Constitution of India… read with Rule 11 of the Maharashtra Legislative Assembly Rules, has already been submitted,” MLAs Baldi and Agrawal wrote in a letter to Zirwal.
In their 2016 decision in Nabam Rebia & Bamang Felix v. Deputy Speaker, Arunachal Legislative Assembly, they cited the Supreme Court’s statement that “the constitutional purpose and constitutional harmony would be maintained and preserved if a Speaker refrains from adjudicating a petition for disqualification under the Tenth Schedule while his own position as the Speaker is under challenge.”
The MLAs state that a member whose disqualification is being sought has at least seven days to respond to the petition for disqualification. They predicted that the required seven days may be waived and hasty decisions on the disqualification applications made due to Maharashtra’s political climate.
“We therefore declare that the Dy Speaker is prohibited by the Indian Constitution, as understood and held by the Supreme Court of India, from making decisions on disqualification petitions while a move for his own removal is under consideration. We further declare that the Dy Speaker shall be in contempt of the SC for any action done,” they added.
In the meantime, Shinde said he had the backing of more than 40 MLAs and has already surpassed the necessary threshold of 37 (out of 55 Sena MLAs) to be elected party leader. He left the hotel in Guwahati and went to the Kamakhya temple to worship.
“Our numbers remain intact,” one of the dissident MLAs declared. We have regular meetings. We’re in good shape. We will reveal our next course of action after any technical issues have been fixed.