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Maharashtra Govt Formation LIVE: Talks in Right Direction, Says Uddhav After Meeting Cong Leaders

Maharashtra Govt Formation LIVE: Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut, who was admitted to Lilavati Hospital after he complained of chest pain and later underwent angioplasty, today reiterated that the chief minister of the state would be from his party. Raut, who was discharged today, has been commenting on the political situation in the state by tweeting couplets from his hospital bed even as the deadlock in the state persists over government formation.

Meanwhile, the Shiv Sena decided to not mention in the Supreme Court its plea challenging the governor’s decision of not granting it three days for getting letter of support for government formation in Maharashtra, according to the party lawyer.

The lawyer representing Shiv Sena in the apex court said the party has preferred not to mention the petition. Advocate Sunil Fernandes, who had filed the petition on behalf of the Shiv Sena, said on Tuesday that the Supreme Court had asked them to mention the writ petition at 10.30am on Wednesday.

The lawyer said another petition challenging the imposition of President’s rule in the state was being readied. The Shiv Sena had on Tuesday moved the apex court challenging the Maharashtra governor’s decision but failed to get an urgent hearing in the matter.

The Shiv Sena had sought a direction from the apex court to quash the Governor’s decision of not giving it the opportunity to prove majority on the floor of the House. The party had claimed it was invited to form the government on Monday and had indicated its willingness to do so on Tuesday. In the petition, the Sena had contended that the governor’s decision was violative of articles 14 and 21 of the Constitution.

The plea had said the governor’s decision rejecting the claim of the Shiv Sena, which is the second largest party with 56 MLAs, to form government is “ex facie arbitrary, unconstitutional and violative of article 14”.

The Shiv Sena was invited to form the state government on November 10 and the petitioner had indicated its willingness to form the government on November 11, it said. In the 288-member Maharashtra assembly, the BJP emerged as the single largest party but fell short of the majority of 145 by 40 seats. The Shiv Sena, which was a BJP ally, garnered 56 seats. While the NCP had 54 seats and Congress had 44.

In the petition, the Shiv Sena had made the ministry of home affairs, the Maharashtra government and the Sharad Pawar-led NCP as respondents. The petition had said as per constitutional conventions and practices, the governor is duty-bound to allow reasonable time for political parties to conclude their negotiation on government formation and not act as an “agent or mouthpiece of the central government”.

The governor has to allow reasonable time to political outfits to present the conclusion of their negotiations before taking a decision to reject any claim to form government, it said.

The Union Cabinet on Tuesday recommended President’s rule in Maharashtra even as top leaders from the NCP, Congress and Shiv Sena held a flurry of consultations in a bid to tot up the numbers and resolve the impasse over government formation in the state since the assembly polls last month.

In an editorial in its mouthpiece Saamana today, the Sena said the Governor was “expected to show some independent thinking”. “Let them criticise the Shiv Sena about the direction in which we are going. What happened when they went with Mehbooba [Mufti] and Nitish [Kumar]? We have digested the poison, like Bhagwan Shankar ‘Neelkanth’. If they would have lived by their promise, we wouldn’t have taken this step. But they would like to sit in opposition instead of giving us our due,” the Sena said.

Hours after the President’s Rule was imposed in the state, which has been facing political uncertainty for nearly three weeks now, Uddhav Thackeray on Tuesday evening said the Congress, the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) and his party will work out a formula for the formation of government in Maharashtra.

Attacking the BJP over its claim that the Sena had been in touch with the Congress-NCP since the October 24 poll results were announced, Thackeray said he had allied with the chief NDA constituent in its “dark times”.

“I officially spoke to the Congress-NCP only yesterday (November 11), seeking support for government formation. We will work out a formula for the same,” he said after meeting the Sena’s MLA-elects at a suburban resort.

Thackeray, flanked by his son Aaditya, said the Sena needs clarity on the Common Minimum Programme (CMP), just like the Congress and the NCP if a government is to be formed with their support.

Thackeray took a dig at Governor BS Koshyari over the denial of more time to drum up support for government formation in the state — the party had failed to produce the required letters of support from the NCP and the Congress when it met Koshyari on Monday night to stake a claim to form the government.

“The Maharashtra Governor had given us a letter (asking the Sena to show willingness to form government) even before the deadline allotted to the BJP got over. We then asked the Governor for additional time, which he denied. Now it seems the Governor has given us ample time of six months to decide on government formation,” said a sarcastic Thackeray. “We had asked for 48 hours, but the Governor gave us six months.”

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