Mumbai: Amid the ongoing political crisis in Maharashtra, Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut on Friday alleged that a Union Minister is threatening Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) chief Sharad Pawar. “Threats are being given to Sharad Pawar ji by a Central minister. Do such threats have the support of Modi Ji and Amit Shah Ji?” said Raut. The Shiv Sena leader further said that this is a “matter of concern” and the Home Minister and PM Modi should pay attention to this. “Some people are threatening us. Some people are threatening Pawar Sahib not to go home. This is a matter of concern. Home Minister and PM Modi should pay attention to this,” he added.
Raut`s statement came after Union Minister and BJP leader Narayan Rane posted a series of tweets last evening alleging that Pawar was threatening rebel Shiv Sena MLAs and if anything happened to them in the state Assembly, there will be consequences.
“Sharad Pawar is threatening the (rebel) MLAs that they should come to the Maharashtra Legislative Assembly. They will definitely come and vote as per their will. If any harm comes to them, it will be difficult to go home,” Rane tweeted in Marathi.
Earlier in a tweet, Raut has said that the use of such language against the NCP chief is not acceptable. “A central minister of the BJP has said that if attempts are made to save MVA govt, then Sharad Pawar will not be allowed to go home. Whether or not the MVA govt survives, use of such language for Sharad Pawar is not acceptable,” Raut tweeted.
Meanwhile, Raut has warned Ekanth Shinde-led rebel MLAs and said that if needed `Shiv Sena workers will come on the roads. “Eknath Shinde faction that`s challenging us must realise that Shiv Sena workers are yet to come on the roads. Such battles are fought either through law or on the roads. If need be then our workers would come on the roads,” said Shiv Sena leader.
He further said that the process underway to disqualify 12 MLAs (of Eknath Shinde faction), their numbers are only on the papers.” Shiv Sena is a big ocean such waves come and go,” he added.
However, refuting the claims of Raut, MoS Railways and BJP leader Raosaheb Patil Danve said that this is an internal matter of the Shiv Sena and BJP is not trying to destabilise the government. “No Central minister is giving threats. BJP is not trying to destabilise the government. This is an internal matter of the Shiv Sena. BJP is only in a wait and watch position,” said Danve.
On the other hand, Shiv Sena on Friday called a meeting of the party leaders including district presidents and chief district coordinators as a confidence-building measure.
The meeting will be chaired by Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray at Shiv Sena Bhawan in Mumbai at 12 pm. Eknath Shinde is appearing to be holding a tight grip on the Shiv Sena, as the strength of MLAs supporting him is expected to cross 50 as more legislators are likely to reach Guwahati on Friday thus further deepening the political crisis in Maharashtra.
The situation for Thackeray continues to become grimmer with his close aide switching sides and the chief minister himself falling short of numbers. It seems that the legacy of Bal Thackeray, who founded Shiv Sena, has slipped from the hands of Uddhav Thackeray with the rebellion of Eknath Shinde as he claims of being a true Shivsainik, the battle of who holds the true legacy of Balasaheb has started.
The political crisis in Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government in Maharashtra erupted after party legislators joined a rebellion led by Eknath Shinde who is staying at a hotel in Guwahati. Shinde camp has claimed the support of 46 MLAs, which includes 37 Shiv Sena MLAs and nine independents.
The rebel MLAs who are at a hotel in Guwahati since June 20, authorised Shinde on June 23 to decide on a further course of action. Shiv Sena MLA Sanjay Shirsat claimed that both Congress and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) are trying to eliminate Shiv Sena politically from Maharashtra and the MLAs made countless attempts to inform Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray about the malafide intentions of alliance partners.
Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut even urged rebel MLAs to return to Mumbai and discuss their issues with Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray. Raut also claimed that the Shiv Sena is ready to “consider exiting out of the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) if this is the will of all the MLAs” but with a condition that the rebel MLAs will have to convey the message directly to CM Uddhav Thackeray and discuss the issues with him.
Meanwhile, the Shiv Sena faction led by Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray has filed a petition before the Deputy Speaker of the state assembly seeking the cancellation of membership of 12 rebel MLAs including Eknath Shinde for “not attending” the legislative party meeting held on Wednesday.
Apart from Shinde, Shiv Sena has sought disqualification of Prakash Surve, Tanaji Sawant, Mahesh Shinde, Abdul Sattar, Sandeep Bhumare, Bharat Gogawale, Sanjay Shirsat, Yamini Yadhav, Anil Babar, Balaji Devdas and Lata Chaudhari.
However, the Shinde camp has written to Maharashtra Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari stating that Shinde continues to be the legislative party leader. Shinde also wrote to the Deputy Speaker of the Maharashtra Assembly regarding the reaffirmation of his appointment as the leader of the Shiv Sena Legislature Party.