Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Monday said he would contest the state Legislative Council election. As many as 25 council seats are likely to fall vacant in the next five months. “Since some council elections are due in the next two months, I will prefer to get elected through the legislative council,” Thackeray said in an interview with Saamana. He added that if he had to contest an assembly election, it would mean that one of the members will have to quit and there would be a re-election from that constituency. “I would prefer the council route,” he said.
Thackeray took oath as chief minister on November 28, and has to get elected within six months to either the legislative council, or the assembly.
The terms of as many as nine members of the legislative council, who were elected by legislative assembly members, will end on April 24, sources said. This includes two from Congress, three each from the NCP and BJP, and one from Shiv Sena. Sena’s Neelam Gorhe, Deputy Chairman of Legislative Council, said she was not aware of the exact date when her tenure will be over.
According to the council’s website, Gorhe’s term ends on April 24 this year. Kiran Pawaskar of NCP, Pandurang Phundkar of BJP and Harisingh Rathod of Congress are among others who will retire in April as well.
Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut said the chief minister will contest the council election in April. “We will have to see whether he will replace Neelam Gorhe or some other member who is retiring in April,” Raut said.
Tenure of 12 nominated members will expire in June. Elections to three graduates’ constituencies and two teachers’ constituencies are expected to be held then, Sena sources said. The Maha Vikas Aghadi will be contesting the council elections together, Raut said.
Council members are elected for a six-year term. Thirty members are elected by MLAs, 22 elected from local authorities’ constituencies and seven each from graduates and teachers constituencies while the governor nominates 12 members.
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