In its first budget session, the Eknath Shinde government in Maharashtra was expected to face heat from the opposition on various issues like law and order, farmers’ problems, etc. But the first week has once again gone by in a tussle between the Shiv Sena now controlled by Shinde and its erstwhile chief Uddhav Thackeray’s camp.
After getting hold of the party name and symbol, Maharashtra chief minister Shinde now wants to control the Shiv Sena in both houses of the Maharashtra legislature. While he has greater numbers in the lower house, he is fighting to get control of the party in the upper house where Uddhav has more legislators with him and Shinde has just one MLC.
On the first day of the budget session, the CM wrote to the deputy speaker of the legislative council, Neelam Gorhe, to appoint Viplav Bajoria as the party whip with the intention to get control over the other 10 MLCs of Shiv Sena, including Uddhav Thackeray. To counter that, Uddhav also wrote a letter to Gorhe, requesting to appoint Vilas Potnis as the whip. The deputy speaker has said that no decision has been taken on this matter.
After the Election Commission gave the Shiv Sena name and the bow-and-arrow party symbol to the faction led by Shinde, who revolted against Thackeray and replaced him as the chief minister, joining hands with the BJP last year, the Shiv Sena has been claiming to represent all party leaders irrespective of their factional loyalty.
Sources say there is still no clarity about whether the Uddhav faction has been recognised as a separate group by the legislative assembly speaker and deputy speaker of the legislative council.
Speaking to the media before the assembly session, the speaker of the lower house Rahul Narvekar said that there is only one Shiv Sena and no other faction has given any application to be recognised as a separate group.
With inputs from News18