The Maharashtra Cabinet on Monday decided to reiterate its recommendation to Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari to nominate Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray as a member of the Legislative Council through the Governor’s quota at the earliest. The Cabinet meeting was chaired by Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar.
On April 9, a Cabinet meeting, also chaired by Pawar, had recommended that Koshyari should appoint Uddhav on one of the two vacant posts of Legislative Council through the Governor’s quota. With no decision taken by the Governor so far, the Cabinet has decided to reiterate its request stating that Governor should take a decision on the matter at the earliest.
“At present, the government and administration are fighting the battle with full force against coronavirus. The crisis is increasing day by day. In such a scenario, it is important to remove instability in the state. So, the Cabinet today decided to reiterate that its recommendation of appointing Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray as a member of the Legislative Council on one of the two vacant posts be processed by the Governor at the earliest,” a statement issued by the Chief Minister’s Office said.
The decision of nominating Uddhav through the Governor’s quota was taken to avoid a constitutional crisis due to the deferment of the Legislative Council polls on nine seats by the Election Commission (EC) in the wake of the nationwide lockdown.
As per Article 164 (4) of the Constitution, any minister who is not a member of the House, needs to get elected to the Legislative Assembly or the Council within six months of appointment. Uddhav, who was sworn in on November 28, 2019, has time till May 27 to get elected to the legislature, failing which, he would have to step down as the CM. The Cabinet would have to resign.
Shiv Sena ministers said they hope the Governor would appoint Uddhav as MLC at the earliest. “We had sent the recommendation on April 9. Now, we decided to reiterate our recommendation and request the Governor to take a decision. We hope he will decide soon,” a Sena minister said.
NCP legislators Rahul Narvekar and Ramrao Vadkute, who were nominated to the Legislative Council through the Governor’s quota, quit the party and resigned as legislators in the run-up to Assembly polls last year. In December, the names of NCP’s Shivajirao Garje and Aditi Nalawade were sent by the government for their nomination, but they have not yet been approved by the Governor. The term of these two seats ends on June 6, 2020.