The Shiv Sena-NCP-Congress combine was named Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) after the three parties decided to join hands to form the government in Maharashtra. Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray was elected as nominee for Maharashtra Chief Minister’s post, following which their leaders met Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari and staked claim to form government of the “Maharashtra Vikas Aghadi”. The new alliance, unveiled in Mumbai Friday, claims to have the support of 166 legislators in the 288-member assembly.
A letter claiming support of 166 MLAs was submitted to the governor. In a letter addressed to Uddhav, Koshiyari asked him to submit a “list” of “majority support in the Assembly” by December 3. “It is noted that Maharashtra Vikas Aghadi, a 3-party alliance, has 166 number of elected members”, the letter released by Raj Bhavan read.
As per the power-sharing arrangement, Sena is likely to hold 15 ministerial portfolios, including the chief minister’s post, while the NCP is also expected to hold 15, and the Congress 13 berths. While Uddhav will be the CM for the full five years, both Congress and NCP are likely to get one deputy chief minister’s post each.
In several constituencies, Sena had fought high-pitched battles against Congress and NCP. The new alliance will also have to defuse the tensions between workers on the ground. According to political observers, if the new alliance goes the distance, it has the potential to alter the state’s political landscape. While both Congress and NCP appeal to identical voter segments and have a predominantly rural presence, Sena draws most of its clout from urban belts.
In the 288-member state Assembly, BJP is the single largest party with 105 MLAs, followed by Shiv Sena, NCP and Congress party having 56, 54 and 44 members respectively. The Sena, however, broke its three-decade-long ties with the BJP after the latter declined to share the chief minister’s post.