Uddhav Thackeray’s Shiv Sena fumes as Eknath Shinde shares stage with CJI UU Lalit, says ‘democracy in danger’

New Delhi: Shiv Sena on Sunday (September 11, 2022) attacked Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde for sharing a stage with Chief Justice of India UU Lalit amid the Supreme Court hearing petitions of the Uddhav Thackeray-led Sena and the CM camp. Shiv Sena spokesperson Arvind Sawant claimed “nothing was happening these days” as per norms, rules and law.

“This is the reason we say democracy is in danger,” he said.

CJI Lalit was on Saturday felicitated at an event in Mumbai where Union Law Minister Kiren Rijiju was also present along with Maharashtra deputy CM and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP ) leader Devendra Fadnavis.

Shinde had led a revolt against the Shiv Sena leadership in June this year which resulted in the collapse of the Thackeray-led Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government. He was then sworn in as the CM on June 30 and Fadnavis took the oath as his deputy.

The Supreme Court recently referred to a five-judge bench the petitions filed by the Shiv Sena and factions raising several constitutional questions related to defection, merger and disqualification.

Meanwhile, Maharashtra NCP president Jayant Patil, whose party is a constituent of the MVA along with the Sena and Congress, also said that it is “improper” that Shinde has shared the stage with the Chief Justice of India when a “serious case of challenging the legitimacy” of his government is being heard by a Constitutional Bench of the Supreme Court.

“A serious case of challenging the legitimacy of the Eknath Shinde government is being heard by a Constitutional Bench of the Supreme Court.

“In such a case, it is improper that Shinde shares stage with the Chief Justice of India. This is not as per protocol,” Patil said.

Posting pictures of Saturday’s event, Congress spokesman Sachin Sawant also said, “When legitimacy and legality of the Shinde-Fadnavis government is being examined by Hon’ble SC itself and not only the current state government but also the man heading it can be disqualified, the dais looks rather incongruous.”

(With agency inputs)