Maharashtra political turmoil updates | June 25, 2022

Maharashtra CM Uddhav Thackeray arrives at Sena Bhavan to attend Shiv Sena’s meeting, in Mumbai on Saturday.

Maharashtra CM Uddhav Thackeray arrives at Sena Bhavan to attend Shiv Sena’s meeting, in Mumbai on Saturday. | Photo Credit: PTI

The national executive meeting of the Shiv Sena on Saturday passed six resolutions giving absolute rights to Maharashtra Chief Minister and party president Uddhav Thackeray to take action against the rebels to bring the revolt within party under control.

The meeting was called in the wake of Sena MLA Eknath Shinde’s rebellion, which has not only destabilised the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government in the State but also poses a risk of the Thackerays losing control of the party.

The executive meeting was meant to reaffirm Mr. Thackeray’s control on the party organisation as before. It also passed a resolution barring any other individual or group from using the name of late Balasaheb Thackeray, the founder of the Shiv Sena. The party executive however did not remove Mr. Shinde from the ‘leader’ position within the organisation and all rights have been given to Mr. Thackeray to decide on the same. It has written a letter to the Election Commission of India (ECI) informing that the party organisation supports Mr. Thackeray as president.

“The Shiv Sena has remained loyal to the ideology of Hindutva and will remain so in future. It never betrayed Maharashtra’s sovereignty and the pride of Marathi speaking population and will never do so. Irrespective of the stature, those who betray the Shiv Sena will face action and this executive gives absolute rights to Uddhav saheb Thackeray to do so. The executive will stand with him,” said the resolution. It was proposed by Sena leader Sanjay Raut and seconded by Lok Sabha MPs Rahul Shewale, Vinayak Raut and party leader Adesh Bandekar.

In another resolution, presented by MLA Ajay Chaudhary, the party condemned the betrayal of the rebel MLAs, stating that party organisation stands firmly with Mr Thackeray. “Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray has absolute rights to take decisions and implement them to bring present situation under control,” it said.

Amid reports that the rebel MLAs would name their group as Shiv Sena (Balasaheb Thackeray), the executive also passed a resolution barring anyone except the Sena from using his name.

Maharashtra’s Environment Minister Aaditya Thackeray will take part in a public outreach campaign starting from south Mumbai where he will be addressing party workers to build confidence in the party.

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Here are the latest updates

9.52 pm

Cadres loyal to Thackerays stage protests against rebels

The ongoing battle for the control of the Shiv Sena between party president Uddhav Thackeray and rebel leader Eknath Shinde played out on the streets of Maharashtra on Saturday with the cadres loyal to the Thackerays staging protests against the rebels by defacing their banners, hurling stones, and vandalising the office of an MLA in various parts of the state. The Mumbai police has deployed its personnel at the city-based offices of various political parties and leaders, including ministers, MLAs and MPs, and their residences as a security measure, an official said on Saturday.

The prohibitory orders issued by the city police under section 37 of the Mumbai Police Act in the first week of June will continue to remain in place till July 10. It bans the assembly of five or more persons at one place, he said.

In Pune's Katraj area, Shiv Sena workers vandalised the office of rebel Shiv Sena MLA Tanaji Sawant, who is currently camping with other dissidents led by Eknath Shinde in Guwahati.

In Nanded city in the Marathwada region, Sena workers hurled stones at the residence of another dissident MLA, Balaji Kalyankar. 15 workers were detained by the police.

In Satara in western Maharashtra, Sena workers tried to stage a protest in front of the bungalow of Minister of State (Home) Shambhuraj Desai, who is also part of the rebel camp, around 1 PM, a police officer said. - PTI

8.25 pm

Political turmoil in Shiv Sena a battle between truth and lie; we will win: Aaditya Thackeray

Shiv Sena leader and Maharashtra minister Aaditya Thackeray on Saturday said the present turmoil in the party, triggered by senior leader Eknath Shinde’s rebellion, is the battle between “truth and lie”.

Speaking to reporters after attending the Shiv Sena national executive,” Mr. Aaditya said, “We will win and the truth will prevail. This is a battle between truth and lies.” Aaditya, son of Sena president and Maharashtra chief minister Uddhav Thackeray, held a meeting with Sena workers from south Mumbai to rally the party cadre.

Elections to the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), controlled by Shiv Sena, are expected to be held later this year.

The Mumbai civic polls are crucial for the Sena which considers Mumbai as its citadel. - PTI


Maharashtra Legislature Secretariat issues ‘summons’ to 16 rebel Shiv Sena MLAs

The Maharashtra Legislature Secretariat has issued “summons” to 16 rebel Shiv Sena MLAs including Eknath Shinde, seeking written replies by the evening of June 27 to the complaints seeking their disqualification.

Signed by Rajendra Bhagwat, principal secretary of the Maharashtra Vidhan Bhavan, the summons were sent to all 16 MLAs named by the Shiv Sena’s chief whip, Sunil Prabhu, in a letter.

Mr. Prabhu had earlier asked the rebel MLAs of the Shinde faction, who are camping in Guwahati, to attend a party meeting here on Wednesday but none of them turned up.

Subsequently, the Sena submitted two letters to the legislature secretariat, seeking disqualification of 16 MLAs including Shinde.

The “summons” issued by Mr. Bhagwat on Saturday said that Mr. Prabhu had submitted a letter to Deputy Speaker of the Assembly Narhari Zirwal seeking their disqualification under The Members of Maharashtra Legislative Assembly (Disqualification on ground of Defection) Rules, 1986.

“In your defence of the summons, you need to submit your written response before 5.30 pm on June 27 (Monday) supported by all the necessary documents. If the written response to the summons is not submitted in given period, it would be considered as you have no say over it. The office will initiate necessary action based on the complaint filed by Prabhu against you,” the letter said.

The Shinde group, which claims to have the support of more than two-thirds of Sena MLAs, has announced that Prabhu has been replaced as party whip by Bharat Gogawale. 

7.25 pm

Rebel Maharashtra ministers to lose their posts ‘in 24 hours’: Sanjay Raut

Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut on Saturday claimed that the rebel Maharashtra ministers in the Eknath Shinde camp will lose their posts “in 24 hours.” Earlier in the day, the party’s national executive authorised Sena president and state chief minister Uddhav Thackeray to take action against the rebel MLAs led by Shinde, a senior cabinet minister.

Talking to a Marathi news channel in the evening, Mr. Raut said “the process of their removal is on.” “Ministers like Gulabrao Patil, Dada Bhuse, Sandipan Bhumre were considered to be loyal Shiv Sena workers who were made cabinet ministers by Uddhav Thackeray....the party has given them enough. They have taken the wrong path and will lose their posts in 24 hours,” he said.

Other ministers in the rebel camp are Shambhuraj Desai, Abdul Sattar and Bachchu Kadu. Kadu heads the Prahar Janshakti Party which is part of the Sena-led ruling alliance.

Mr. Raut also claimed that when the Sena had an alliance with the BJP and had asked that the post of chief minister be rotated between the two parties, Mr. Thackeray had Mr. Shinde in mind for the top post.

The two allies fell out over the sharing of the CM’s post after the 2019 elections, following which the Sena joined hands with Congress and NCP.

Mr. Raut, meanwhile, also said that half of the rebels have nothing to do with Hindutva as they claim, but they are facing Enforcement Directorate’s probe. - PTI 

6.11 pm

Legal battle underway on Constitutional stalemate, says Cong

As rebel Shiv Sena MLAs led by Eknath Shinde camping in Guwahati dig in their heels, the Congress, part of the Maha Vikas Aghadi, on Saturday said a legal battle over a Constitutional stalemate is underway and asserted that the tripartite dispensation remains strong.

Amid angry protests by Shiv Sena cadres in parts of Maharashtra against their rebel leaders, state minister and Congress leader Ashok Chavan said the law and order situation is fine in the state.

He said Sena cadres are only expressing their anger against the rebels.

Talking to reporters after Congress leaders met in Mumbai to discuss the prevailing political situation, Chavan said the rebel faction will have to get a legal sanction (for their group or for assuming a new name).

Congress leaders Balasaheb Thorat, Ashok Chavan and others address the media after a meeting with party MLAs, at his official residence, in Mumbai on Saturday.

Congress leaders Balasaheb Thorat, Ashok Chavan and others address the media after a meeting with party MLAs, at his official residence, in Mumbai on Saturday. | Photo Credit: PTI

Congress legislature party leader and state revenue minister Balasaheb Thorat said the MVA is on a stronger wicket legally.

“We are monitoring the situation. Right now a legal battle over a Constitutional stalemate is on,” he said.

Congress said in a statement that the Eknath Shinde camp had submitted a notice to move a resolution to remove Maharashtra deputy Speaker, Narhari Zirwal, under Article 179 of the Constitution.

“But rules say any motion in the Assembly can be moved only after the Governor issues summons to convene the Assembly session. Once the notice to remove the Speaker is received, it has to be given 14 days (in advance). After 14 days, the notice will be read in the Assembly and then the rest procedure for the removal will follow.”

“As of now, the governor has not issued summons to convene the session, so Shinde’s letter is not a motion to remove the Deputy Speaker, it’s only an intent,” the statement said.

It said Mr. Shinde has referred to the Supreme Court judgement in the Nebam Rebia case in his support, however, it doesn’t apply to Maharashtra right now.

“However, it is a misplaced reference because in that case, Arunachal Governor had issued a summons for convening the Assembly session on November 3, 2015. The notice for the removal of the Speaker was moved on November 11, 2015.”

“It was after the Assembly was convened by the Governor that the SC rightfully upheld its judgement saying the Speaker can’t adjudicate upon disqualification, while the notice on his own removal is pending. The directions in Nebam Rebia case do not apply to Maharashtra till the governor convenes the Assembly and a proper and bonafide motion is moved against the Deputy Speaker,” it stated.

The Congress said the rebel group must request the state governor to convene the assembly session to stop the deputy Speaker from proceedings (initiating the disqualification of (16) MLAs demanded by the Sena leadership).

It said the Supreme Court in its ruling had agreed that the governor had no direct or indirect constitutionally assigned role in the matter of the removal of the Speaker (or the Deputy Speaker).

“So, the Maharashtra Governor can’t direct Deputy Speaker to stop the disqualification proceedings or ask for scheduling of business of the House,” the Congress stated.

Congress questioned the claims of the Shinde camp claiming the support of the bulk of Shiv Sena MLAs.

“If rebels have numbers why are they not demanding a no-confidence motion? Why is the governor not issuing summons for the Assembly session, which he is empowered to do? It’s being heard that rebels and BJP MLAs will demand the Governor for the election of a new Speaker, which is not possible because the governor had earlier refused in writing the permission for election to the post of Speaker as the matter is sub-judice in the SC. He can’t take a U-turn now,” the Congress statement said. - PTI

6.00 pm

Security cover of rebel Sena MLAs’ houses, their kin removed, claims Shinde; home minister denies move

Dissident Shiv Sena leader Eknath Shinde on Saturday alleged that the Maharashtra government has withdrawn the security cover from the residences of 38 party rebels, including himself, and their families, and dubbed the action as “political vendetta”, although Home Minister Dilip Walse Patil denied any such move.

Mr. Shinde, who is currently camping in Guwahati along with the rebel legislators, tweeted a letter signed by him and other MLAs that is addressed to Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray and Walse Patil.

In the letter, the legislators said CM Thackeray and the leaders of the ruling Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) alliance will be responsible if any harm is caused to their family members.

In his tweet, Mr. Shinde alleged that the security deployed at the legislators’ houses was withdrawn on the orders of Mr. Thackeray and Walse Patil as part of “political vendetta”. “The government is responsible for the security of these legislators and their family members,” he added.

However, Walse Patil said the chief minister and the home department did not order the removal of security cover of any MLA in the state.

“Allegations being made through Twitter are false and malicious,” he said.

Mr. Shinde alleged that in the last two-and-a-half years, the MVA allies (NCP and Congress) had systematically tried to weaken the Shiv Sena.

The letter said that security provided to them at the residences as sitting MLAs as well as to their family members as per the protocol has been illegally and unlawfully withdrawn as an act of revenge.

“The sinister move is an attempt to break our resolve and arm-twist us to give into the demands of the MVA government comprising NCP and Congress goons. Various leaders of the MVA government are instigating the cadre of their respective parties to take up violence to intimidate us,” it said.

“(Shiv Sena leader) Sanjay Raut has threatened us saying he would make it difficult for the MLAs who have left to return to the state and move around. The impact of these statements was borne by two of our members as their offices were vandalized by cadres of Shiv Sena merely after hours of withdrawing security of the MLAs,” the letter added.

In Punjab, security of some high-profile persons was removed by the state government due to which most of the high profile persons became target of gangsters, the MLAs said.

“If our family members are harmed, then the chief minister, leaders of the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government like Sharad Pawar, Sanjay Raut and Aaditya Thackeray will be responsible,” the letter said.

The MLAs who have signed the letter include Eknath Shinde (Kopri-Pachpakhadi assembly segment), Gulabrao Patil (Jalgaon rural), Sada Sarvankar (Mahim), Dada Bhuse (Malegaon), Shambhuraj Desai (Patan), Deepak Kesarkar (Sawantwadi), Bharat Gogavale (Mahad), Pratap Sarnaik (Owala-Majiwada), Yogesh Kadam (Dapoli), Shrinivas Wanga (Palghar), Lata Sonavane (Chopda), Sanjay Shirsat (Aurangabad West), Tanaji Sawant (Paranda) and Dilip Lande (Chandivali).

The MVA government has been facing a crisis of survival after a majority of Sena MLAs shifted their loyalty to Shinde and are camping in Guwahati. - PTI 

5.40 pm

Five Sena men detained for pelting stones at office of Eknath Shinde’s LS MP son

At least five Shiv Sena supporters were detained on Saturday in Thane district for allegedly pelting stones at the office of Shrikant Shinde, Lok Sabha MP from Kalyan and son of Shiv Sena rebel leader Eknath Shinde.

The incident took place at the Gol Maidan office in Ulhasnagar of the LS MP at 1 p.m. and a video of it had gone viral on social media soon after.

It showed some persons throwing stones at the office, damaging a board and also shouting pro-Uddhav Thackeray slogans In the video, four policemen can be seen chasing away the group, comprising eight to ten persons.

Five Sena supporters have been detained for the incident and further probe was underway, an Ulhasnagar police official said.

Besides, posters of Eknath Shinde were blackened in Navi Mumbai, and similar reports have also come in from Nagpur and Nashik.

Meanwhile, at least 20 Sena supporters, including some office-bearers, were detained on Friday for vandalising the office board of MLA Mangesh Kudalkar in Nehrunagar in Mumbai’s Kurla area, an official said.

They were let off with a warning, the Mumbai police official added. - PTI 

4.30 pm

‘We are the Shiv Sena’

"We are still in Shiv Sena. We have informed our party president about what how we want to go ahead. We have majority with our group, which means we are the Shiv Sena," Rebel MLA Deepak Kesarkar says in a virtual press conference from Guwahati.

"The CM is a constitutional head. We request him to stop ongoing violence and fulfill his constitutional duty," says Mr. Kesarkar.

“We need not merge with any party. In case of separate group, we can sit separately. We are not going to merge with any other party,” he says.

“We have numbers. But it is not safe to return. Law and order is getting problematic and the government is not taking action against those who are instigating the violence,” claims Mr. Kesarkar.

Claiming that the NCP was “destroying“ Shiv Sena, Mr. Kesarkar says the party should align with the BJP to ensure State’s progress. “What is the use of CM post if party is not being benefited,“ he wonders.

3.20 pm

Deputy Speaker seeks rebel MLAs’ response

Maharashtra Assembly deputy speaker has asked 16 rebel MLAs to reply to the notice of disqualification in 48 hours, that is by Monday evening.

The Shinde group has already decided to approach the court if any such notices are issued.

2.45 pm

Shiv Sena National Executive backs Uddhav

Shiv Sena national executive passes resolution, which gives all rights to take decisions in present situation to party president Uddhav Thackeray.

The Executive's resolution says no other group can use the names Balasaheb Thackeray and Shiv Sena.

It's third resolution gives the party president Uddhav Thackeray rights to take action against rebels.

2.15 pm

Section 144

Section 144 has been imposed in Mumbai prohibiting mobilising five or more people in view of present political situation in the State.

1:48 pm

Sena workers vandalise rebel MLA’s office in Pune; say every ‘traitor’ will be targeted

Shiv Sena workers on Saturday vandalised an office of rebel Shiv Sena MLA Tanaji Sawant, who is currently in Guwahati as part of the Eknath Shinde camp.

A group of Sena workers barged into the office of Bhairavnath Sugar Works, which belongs to Sawant, and damaged the office located in the Katraj area in the morning, party corporator Vishal Dhanawade, who was part of the action, said. -PTI

1:45 pm

His decisions always right, want to see him become CM: People from Eknath Shinde’s native village rally behind him

The residents of Dare village in Maharashtra’s Satara district, the native place of Eknath Shinde, who is at the centre of the ongoing political turmoil in Maharashtra, recall the Shiv Sena leader as a “people’s man” and some of them feel that the decisions he had taken in the past later turned out to be right.

The people from the village with around 80 households say they are standing strongly behind Shinde and want to see him become the state chief minister soon. -PTI

10:53 am

Shinde alleges security for family withdrawn by State govt

Eknath Shinde alleges that security for family and relatives of rebel MLAs has been withdrawn by the State government. He writes a letter to CM Uddhav Thackeray, Home Minister Dilip Walse-Patil, Maharashtra DGP.

June 24

Sena to send notices to rebels from tomorrow, seeks disqualification of four more MLAs

The Shiv Sena has sent the names of four more rebel MLAs to the Maharashtra Assembly deputy speaker for initiating action of disqualification against them, a senior leader said on Friday evening.

The party will also issue notices to 16 MLAs of the rebel faction and ask them to respond by Monday, said Sena MP Arvind Sawant here.

June 24

BJP wants to finish off Shiv Sena as it does not want to share Hindu vote bank: Uddhav PTI

Striking a defiant note, Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Friday night dared rebel leader Eknath Shinde and the BJP to try and take away the Shiv Sena cadre and those who vote for the party and also accused the BJP of trying to finish off the Sena.

In a virtual address to party corporators, he said the common Shiv Sena workers were his “wealth”, and as long as they were with him, he did not care about criticism by others.

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Printable version | Jun 25, 2022 11:01:43 pm |