Updated: June 26, 2022 7:09:42 am
Moving to regain control of the Shiv Sena after majority MLAs of the party rallied behind rebel minister Eknath Shinde, Maharashtra Chief Minister and Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray chaired a meeting Saturday of the party national executive which authorised him to take all decisions related to the party.
Six resolutions were passed including the decision not to allow anyone other than the Shiv Sena to use the name of Balasaheb Thackeray, and to take strict action against the rebel MLAs.
Also Saturday, disqualification notices were served on 16 rebel MLAs who the Sena claimed did not attend a party meeting convened by Uddhav earlier this week. The MLAs have been given time until Monday to respond, failing which action would be initiated against the 16 MLAs, the rebel camp, which is seeking legal opinion, may approach the courts, even the Supreme Court.
Shinde supporters say Deputy Speaker Narhari Zirwal, who is from the NCP, cannot act on the petition against the 16 MLAs because a separate petition seeking Zirwal’s removal is already pending.
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In a Twitter post, Shinde asked Shiv Sainiks to “understand MVA’s plan” and said he is “fighting a battle with a dragon to free the Shiv Sena and Shiv Sainiks from its clutches”.
Of the 288 members in the Sena national executive, 38 rebel MLAs, senior leader Ramdas Kadam and MP Shrikant Shinde were not present at the meeting chaired by Uddhav. The national executive includes all MPs, MLAs, district chiefs and senior leaders.
At the meeting, Sanjay Raut, MP and chief spokesperson of the party, said the Shiv Sena belongs to “Hindu Hriday Samrat” Balasaheb Thackeray, and “the Shiv Sena, as always, will follow the ideology of Hindutva” and “will never compromise with the unity” of Maharashtra and issues of Marathi manoos (people). The resolution was passed and authorised Uddhav to take action against the rebel MLAs.
“Six resolutions have been passed in the meeting. We will be taking strict action against those who betrayed the party. Uddhav Saheb has the authority to take a decision on those who have used Shiv Sena founder Balasaheb Thackeray’s name for self-centred politics. Those who have left us cannot use the name of the party and our patriarch’s name,” Raut said.
“CM Uddhav Thackeray has said that leaders who have left the Shiv Sena should not seek votes in the name of Shiv Sena and Balasaheb Thackeray. Ask for votes in the name of your father. Maha Vikas Aghadi is united. People will come to know about the action which will be taken against those who have left the party,” he said.
Earlier in the day, Shinde, in a Twitter post, claimed that protection of rebel Shiv Sena MLAs had been withdrawn on the orders of the Chief Minister and the state Home Minister. This, he said, was how the NCP and Congress had been mounting pressure on the Sena MLAs.
State Home Minister Dilip Walse-Patil, however, called Shinde’s claim “mischievous” and “false”.
Shinde said “if any harm were to come to our family members, then the Chief Minister and the leaders of MVA government like Mr Sharad Pawar, Mr Sanjay Raut, Mr Aaditya Thackeray will be responsible”.
Shinde repeated his charge that Sena MLAs were not granted adequate development funds. “While Sena MLAs got Rs 50-55 crore as funds for their constituency, NCP MLAs got a minimum or Rs 700-800 crore sanctioned for their areas,” he alleged.
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