Maha Vikas Agadi (MVA) government in Maharashtra is on the verge of collapse as Shiv Sena Minister Eknath Shinde has the support of 37 MLAs, who are currently camping with him in Guwahati. With the magic number of 37, Shinde is in a comfortable position to evade the Anti-Discrimination Act and demand the formation of the government with the support of the BJP.
Besides 37 MLAs, Shinde also has the support of nine independent lawmakers who reside in the same Guwahati Hotel. Talking to News 18 On Thursday, Shendi said the rebel camp had the numbers and there was no doubting their decision.
The rebel leader also seemed confident that more people would join his camp. “You see people coming and we will all sit together and decide what to do. Everyone’s opinion will be sought and then we will move forward. It is not my decision but everyone.” Sources also said Shinde is preparing papers to claim the Shiv Sena party symbol.
On Thursday, six MLAs flew to Surat and were later flown to Guwahati in Assam on two charter flights. Chief Sena MLC Ravindra Fatak has also arrived in Guwahati from Surat. Phatak was one of the envoys sent by Prime Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Tuesday to hold discussions with Shinde and other rebel MLAs in Surat to find a solution to the crisis.
Phatak with Shiv Sena MLAs – Dadaji Bhuse and Sanjay Rathod – arrived in Guwahati on a charter flight from Surat on Thursday night. Bush is the Minister of Agriculture in the MVA government.
In the morning, four more MLAs – Mangesh Kudalkar, Sada Sarvankar, Ashish Jaiswal and Deepak Keskar – arrived in Assam in another chartered plane, which they boarded from Surat. On Wednesday, four MLAs from Maharashtra, including two independents, arrived in Surat and were then flown to Assam on a chartered flight.
File a petition to cancel the membership of the Sina rebels
Meanwhile, Shiv Sena made an appeal to the vice president of the assembly in Maharashtra, asking for the disqualification of the rebels from the SLA, including Shinde. Speaking to CNN-News18, Representative Arvind Sawant, MP Shiv Sena, said, “A notice has been sent to MLAs to attend the June 22 (legislature party) meeting, but they did not attend. Disciplinary action will be taken against them.”
Sawant said the party had asked the assembly’s vice president to take action against 12 Moro Islamic Liberation Army (MILA) rebels. We have asked the Vice President of the House of Representatives to cancel their membership. It will serve others as well.”
Allies pledge support
Earlier on Thursday, Sanjay Raut, Member of Parliament for Shiv Sena, said they are ready to withdraw from Maha Vikas Agadi’s government if the rebels return to Mumbai. NCP Chairman Sharad Pawar, an ally of Sina today, assured that Udhav will have all the support of his party and that his government will continue. “The fate of the MVA government will be decided in the assembly and not in Guwahati (where the rebels are camped). Pawar said the MVA would prove its majority on the floor of the House of Representatives. Congress, the third component of the MVA, also pledged support for Shiv Sena.
On Wednesday, CM Thackeray offered, in an impassioned speech, to resign from his position amid the rebellion and later vacated his official residence, Varsha, in south Mumbai and moved to Matushree, his family home in the suburbs of Bandra.
On paper, Shiv Sena, who heads the MVA Alliance, has 55 MLAs, followed by NCP allies at 53 and Congress at 44. But with Shinde claiming the support of more than 40 MLAs, it will be an uphill task for the Uddhav camp to establish a majority on the House floor.
(with PTI input)
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