Come back and Sena will consider alliance: Raut to rebels
Amid the political crisis in Maharashtra, only 13 MLAs attended the meeting chaired by Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, while rebel Shiv Sena leader Eknath Shinde posted a photo with 42 MLAs. The party has asked Shinde and the other rebel MLAs to "return in 24 hours," assuring them that it will consider their demand to quit the ruling Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) alliance.
Why does this story matter?
- Maharashtra is currently in a political crisis after rebel Sena MLA Eknath Shinde claimed that he has 40 MLAs with him to challenge the present government.
- He was displeased with the Sena joining hands with the Congress and NCP to form the MVA alliance.
- He claimed that the Sena MLAs were sidelined, while those from the alliance partners got more opportunities and funds.
MLAs should return to Mumbai and talk to CM: Raut
Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut on Thursday said that the party was ready to quit the MVA alliance if the rebel MLAs want so. "MLAs should not communicate from Guwahati, they should come back to Mumbai and discuss all this with CM. We are ready to consider exiting the MVA if this is the will of all MLAs," said Raut.
Another rebel MLA writes to Thackeray
Earlier, another rebel leader Sanjay Shirsat claimed that Shinde took the step because of the "humiliation" the MLAs faced in the last two-and-a-half years. In a letter, Shirsat claimed that the Sena MLAs had no access to Thackeray—who has now been reduced to a minority party chief. He also said that the alliance partners—the Congress and the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP)—were the "real opponents."
'Thackeray was only accessible to Congress and NCP MLAs'
"CM never used to be in the Secretariat, instead, he used to be in Matoshri. We used to call people around the CM but they never used to attend our calls. We were fed up with all these things and persuaded Eknath Shinde to take this step," Shirsat wrote. The letter further read that Thackeray was only accessible to Congress and NCP MLAs.
What more did the letter say?
The letter further stated that they were called and stopped from going to Ayodhya during Aaditya Thackeray's visit. They felt insulted because Hindutva and Ram Mandir had always been crucial issues for the party. They also alleged that the NCP and Congress leaders were given more opportunities to meet the CM and funds related to work in their constituencies.
What possible moves can be expected from the leaders?
Meanwhile, if Shinde doesn't agree to Sena's proposal, he could be elected as leader of the Shiv Sena rebels who have more than two-third MLAs. Thackeray might also announce a decision on whether he would step down as CM or face a no-confidence motion in the Assembly. If Shinde is elected, the BJP may back him and stake a claim to form a government.
Pawar asks why there was no intel on MLAs' flight
NCP chief Sharad Pawar had on Tuesday called Shinde's revolt an internal crisis of the Shiv Sena. On Wednesday, however, he reportedly expressed displeasure and questioned why there was no intelligence on Shinde flying out with MLAs on Monday. Meanwhile, the Congress on Tuesday deputed its senior leader and former Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath as an AICC observer in Maharashtra.