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Shiv Sena summons MLAs with Aadhaar, clothes

THE ASIAN AGE. | SONU SHRIVASTAVA
Published : Nov 20, 2019, 1:44 am IST
Updated : Nov 20, 2019, 1:44 am IST

The legislators, however, have not been told where they will be corralled after the meeting.

Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray
 Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray

Mumbai: With the political impasse in Maharashtra showing no sign of ending, Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray Tuesday summoned party MLAs to discuss the next course of action at his residence, Matoshree, on Friday. The MLAs have been told to carry their Aadhaar and PAN cards as well as five sets of clothing as they would be required to stick together for the next few days.

A Sena MLA from the Marathwada region, requesting anonymity, said, “We have been told that we might need to present ourselves before the governor should the Sena decide to stake claim to form the government with the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) and Congress’ support.”

The legislators, however, have not been told where they will be corralled after the meeting.

According to sources, this could well be a ploy by the Sena to reassure their MLAs that the party’s talks with the Congress and NCP regarding government formation are on “right track”. The Congress and the NCP have still not confirmed their support for a Shiv Sena-led government, which has led to uneasiness in the saffron party.

When contacted, former Congress legislator from Sillod Assembly constituency, Abdul Sattar, who joined the Sena just before Assembly election, confirmed that Sena MLAs had been summoned to Mumbai.

Meanwhile, Shiv Sena spokesperson Sanjay Raut and NCP chief Sharad Pawar met for 15 minutes at the latter’s 6, Janpath, residence in New Delhi on Tuesday. This was the second meeting between the Sena leader and NCP chief this week.

Mr Pawar — after meeting Congress president Sonia Gandhi on Monday — had said that he did not discuss the Shiv Sena or government formation in the state with Mrs Gandhi. However, the Sena is certain that no party can form the government without them in Maharashtra and is willing to wait for the Congress and NCP’s decision. Mr Raut has also said that talks with the Congress and NCP “are on the right track”.

In New Delhi, the Sena spokesperson said that a Shiv Sena-led government would come to power in Maharashtra.

Asked about Republican Party of India’s (RPI) chief Ramdas Athawale’s proposed “formula” to end the deadlock in the state — a three-year term for a BJP chief minister and two-year term for Shiv Sena — Mr Raut thanked Mr Athavale and asked him not to worry about the Sena.

Asked if he had been given a deadline of first week of December for the government to be formed in Maharashtra, he told a news agency, “It takes time to form a government… You need to go through a lot of processes when it comes to President’s rule.”

Speculation that a Sena-NCP-Congress is not a done deal was fuelled by Mr Pawar’s baffling response to reporters asking him about the Shiv Sena’s claim about talks with the NCP — “Really?”

Reacting to this earlier in the day, Mr Raut said it would take a “hundred lifetimes to understand what Mr Pawar says”.

Amidst confusion over the post-poll alliance with the NCP, there have been reports about some Sena lawmakers wanting to go back to the NDA fold. Some of them have reportedly said that the party can revive its alliance with the BJP provided it agrees to sharing 50 per cent Cabinet berths in Maharashtra and the chief minister’s post for 2.5 years each.

Tags: uddhav thackeray, sanjay raut