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September 23, 2020

Uddhav to lead ‘Maha Vikas Aghadi’ govt, swearing-in on Thursday

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‘I want to thank Sonia ji also. Parties with different ideologies have come together…those who were friends for 30 years, did not trust us. But those against whom we fought for 30 years have trusted me,’ Thackeray said.

IMAGE: Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray being greeted by NCP chief Sharad Pawar after he was chosen as the nominee for Maharashtra chief ministers post by Shiv Sena-NCP-Congress alliance, during a meeting in Mumbai, on Tuesday. Photograph: Sahil Salvi

The Shiv Sena-Nationalist Congress Party-Congress alliance on Tuesday evening announced Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray as their nominee for the 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 leaders submitted a letter claiming support of 166 MLAs to the Governor.

IMAGE: Maha Vikas Aghadi MLAs and leaders submitted a letter to Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari declaring Shiv Sena Chief Udhhav Thackeray as their leader at Raj Bhavan, Mumbai, on Tuesday. Photograph: PTI Photo

The Governor, in a letter addressed to Thackeray, asked him to submit a ‘list’ of ‘majority support in the assembly’ by December 3.

The Governor said in the letter, ‘I have noted that Maharashtra Vikas Aghadi has won 166 number of elected members’, a Raj Bhavan statement said.

It further said that since Uddhav is not a member of the Maharashtra legislature, he will have to become a member within six months as taking oath as the CM.

A senior Sena leader, who met the governor along with leaders of the Congress and the NCP, said Thackeray will take oath as the chief minister at 6.40 pm on November 28 at the Shivaji Park in Dadar.


IMAGE: Pawar, Thackeray and other leaders during the meeting. Photograph: PTI Photo

Earlier, NCP chief Sharad Pawar had announced at a joint meeting of the three parties that swearing in of the new government will take place on December 1, but the schedule was apparently changed late night.

“We are submitting a joint statement of staking claim for government formation. We will also produce proof of the support of all the MLAs of the three parties to the governor as part of the mandatory procedure,” said the leader.

Uddhav Thackeray, who would be the first member of his family to occupy the top political post, said his government will not seek ‘revenge’ against anyone.

“I will go to Delhi to meet my ‘elder brother’ after the government is formed,” Thackeray said, referring to Prime Minister Narendra Modi who had called him ‘my younger brother’ during campaign rallies.

IMAGE: Uddhav pays tribute to his father and late Shiv Sena founder Bal Thackeray at his residence in Mumbai on Tuesday. Photograph: Sahil Salvi

The decision to elect Thackeray as nominee for CM’s post was taken at a joint meeting of the three parties at a hotel in Mumbai, hours after the four-day-old Bharatiya Janata Party government led by Devendra Fadnavis and supported by NCP’s Ajit Pawar collapsed.

Maharashtra NCP chief Jayant Patil proposed Thackeray’s name as ‘the (next) chief minister’. State Congress chief Balasaheb Thorat seconded the proposal.

The meeting was attended by Sharad Pawar, senior party leader Praful Patel, Congress leader Ashok Chavan, Swabhimani Shetkari Sanghatana’s Raju Shetti, Samajwadi Party’s Abu Azmi, MLAs of all these parties and others.

IMAGE: Pawar speaks as Thackeray and other leaders look on during the meeting. Photograph: PTI Photo

Speaking at the meeting, Thackeray evoked memories of his father and late Shiv Sena founder Bal Thackeray.

He also thanked Congress president Sonia Gandhi.

“I want to thank Sonia ji also. Parties with different ideologies have come together…those who were friends for 30 years, did not trust us. But those against whom we fought for 30 years have trusted me,” Thackeray said.

Common people should think of this government as their own, he said.

IMAGE: Thackeray leaves Trident Hotel after the meeting. Photograph: PTI Photo

“The fight is not personal…my government will not work in a vindictive way,” Thackeray said.

Without naming the former ally BJP with whom the Sena had a bitter falling out after contesting the October 21 assembly elections together, Thackeray said he would not align with those who speak lies.

Sharad Pawar said Thackeray’s swearing-in ceremony will take place at Shivaji Park on December 1.

Speaking on the occasion, Pawar eulogised Bal Thackeray, his bitter adversary in politics but a dear friend in personal life.

IMAGE: Thackeray gestures as he leaves Trident Hotel after the meeting. Photograph: PTI Photo

The three parties named their alliance as ‘Maharashtra Vikas Aghadi’.

Earlier in the day, Chief Minister Fadnavis resigned, barely 80 hours after taking oath for the second time, a move triggered by his deputy Ajit Pawar’s resignation citing ‘personal reasons’.

Fadnavis was sworn in on November 23 in an early morning hush-hush ceremony, with the support of Ajit Pawar, who then headed the 54-member NCP legislature party.

Ajit was not seen at the joint meeting of the three parties on Tuesday evening.

Via: PTI. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PTI content, including by framing or similar means, is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent.

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