17-20 rebels are on ED radar, Eknath Shinde too, says Sanjay Raut

The Indian Express | 3 days ago | 23-06-2022 | 02:45 pm

17-20 rebels are on ED radar, Eknath Shinde too, says Sanjay Raut

Even as the number of rebels in the group led by Shiv Sena minister Eknath Shinde is rising, senior Sena leaders said Thursday that at least 17-20 party MLAs have been on the radar of the Enforcement Directorate (ED) and want to “get out of their predicament” by jumping ship. Other 10-15 rebels who are also involved in various businesses also feared getting ED notices, added the Sena leaders.When asked whether ED notices were the prime reason behind the Sena MLAs trying to join hands with the BJP, Shiv Sena chief spokesperson Sanjay Raut told the Indian Express on Thursday, “As per my information a majority of the rebel MLAs have received ED notices. The BJP has been putting pressure on them through the ED. Other MLAs were also on the watch of the agency.”Asked whether Shinde was also on ED radar, Raut said, “Yes, as per my information…”Follow MVA crisis Live Updates hereA senior Sena leader said, “Many of the rebel group leaders have been making rounds of the ED offices. And after that, they have been meeting Eknath Shinde and BJP leaders. It is clear that they want to get out of their predicament by joining hands with the BJP.”When asked whether Shinde was ready to hold a one-on-one meeting with Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, Raut said, “We have already urged him to come down to Mumbai for a meeting. This was done on phone as well as the CM made the appeal through the Facebook live session. But until the MLAs and Shinde come down to Mumbai, nothing can be said or done.”Shinde, who told a TV news channel on Wednesday that he had the support of 46 MLAs and the numbers would go up, on Thursday tweeted that the ruling Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) has benefitted during the two-and-a-half-year alliance while the Sena has been hit hard.Meanwhile, Shiv Sena sources said Uddhav Thackeray who is set to hold a meeting with senior party leaders and MPs is likely to make a big announcement. “He might take a decisive move… It is possible that he might resign. Aaditya Thackeray has already removed the ‘minister’ word from his Twitter handle. The CM has moved to Matoshree,” said a leader.“Eknath Shinde is unrelenting and has made no such offer that Uddhav Thackeray should continue in the saddle. Therefore, it seems to be all over for Uddhav Thackeray,” said a former Sena MP.Like the Shiv Sena, the NCP is also holding a meeting of its MLA in Mumbai to decide the future course of action as the MVA government’s fall has become imminent. The meeting will be presided over by party chief Sharad Pawar.NCP spokesperson Clyde Crasto said, “A meeting of MLAs and ministers of NCP has been planned today. Our party chief will preside over the meeting.”

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Political crisis casts shadow over appointment of new Mumbai police chief
The Indian Express | 1 hour ago | 27-06-2022 | 12:45 am
The Indian Express
1 hour ago | 27-06-2022 | 12:45 am

APART FROM its impact on various governance-related issues, the rebellion in the Shiv Sena that could lead to the collapse of the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government in the state will also have a bearing on the impending choice of the Mumbai Police Commissioner. The term of the incumbent Commissioner Sanjay Pandey ends on Thursday and the chances of an extension to him, which has to be given by the central government, are slim in the current circumstances.Sources said that the government, which currently has its hands tied up with the prevailing political situation, may end up giving the additional charge for the post to a serving official if it cannot make up its mind about Pandey’s replacement. A government official said, “While there are frontrunners to the post, the change in the political situation has made the issue all the more complex. Powerful politicians like Eknath Shinde who would have had a say in pushing someone’s name forward will no longer be in contention.” The official added, “In the current climate, where law and order can be an issue especially when the rebel MLAs come to the city in case of a floor test, the MVA government will be all the more careful about whom it wants to give the reins of the police force. In the changed dynamics, they may also go in for giving another officer the additional charge in the meantime.” Sources said that in the past, when the Commissioner had been away, additional charge was given to the senior-most joint commissioner in the city. In the current scenario, Vishwas Nangre Patil, the Joint Commissioner (law & order), and Rajwardhan, Joint Commissioner (traffic), both from the 1997 batch, are the senior-most officers in the city.Prior to the rebellion, Thane Police Commissioner Jai Jeet Singh and Vivek Phansalkar, Director General-Police Housing, were seen as frontrunners for the post of the Mumbai Police Commissioner. Sources said that if the Maharashtra Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government remains in power, it is Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) chief Sharad Pawar who will weigh in on the choice of the Mumbai Police Commissioner.

Political crisis casts shadow over appointment of new Mumbai police chief
Mumbai confidential: Last-minute packing
The Indian Express | 1 hour ago | 27-06-2022 | 12:45 am
The Indian Express
1 hour ago | 27-06-2022 | 12:45 am

A number of MLAs who flew to Guwahati to join the Eknath Shinde faction of the Shiv Sena had to pack their bags in great hurry. They were all taken to Surat via Palghar and then flown to Assam capital. In the rush, many of them forgot to carry along necessities such as night clothes, shaving kits and cellphone chargers. Sources in Shinde camp said that the local BJP unit in Guwahati was sent to the market to buy these items, including undergarments, for the MLAs.Naming ideasWith the Shiv Sena alleging that agencies such as the Enforcement Directorate (ED) were being used to break the MVA government apart, and that rebel leader Eknath Shinde and leader of opposition Devendra Fadnavis are likely to head a BJP government next, a leader of the Sena has started referring to it as “ED government” with E standing for Eknath and D for Devendra.Staying in touchA number of rebel Shiv Sena MLAs have created their own WhatsApp groups of supporters and workers in their constituencies as a way to communicate with their support base. Post the rebellion when many MLAs went incommunicado after shifting to Guwahati, these WhatsApp groups have become their sounding boards with these leaders receiving brickbats as well as bouquet emojis for their act.‘What a hotel!’Rebel Shiv Sena MLA Shahji Bapu Patil’s gushing description of the surroundings of the place in which he is presently putting up in Guwahati has led to a virtual meme fest on social media. In an audio clip of Patil’s conversation with one of his supporters after the rebellion, the leader is heard exclaiming “Kay Jhadi, Kay Dongar, Kay Hotel” (What trees, what mountains, what a hotel!). The utterances by the first-time MLA from Sangola has led to a number of memes, and a swipe from the Shiv Sena which remarked that Patil can see beautiful trees, mountains and hotels in Maharashtra as well.(Contributed by: Yogesh Naik and Zeeshan Shaikh)

Mumbai confidential: Last-minute packing
Maharashtra Crisis: What Happened So Far
India | 1 hour ago | 27-06-2022 | 12:05 am
India
1 hour ago | 27-06-2022 | 12:05 am

Mumbai: Maharashtra’s political crisis has further deepened as the rebel MLA Eknath Shinde’s camp on Sunday went to the Supreme Court, filing an appeal against the Shiv Sena’s move to disqualify him and 15 other MLAs. The top court is likely to hear the matter on Monday. Apart from this, the Shinde camp has also challenged the appointment of Ajay Choudhari as the Shiv Sena Legislature Party leader and the rejection of the no-confidence motion against Deputy Speaker Narahari Zirwal.Also Read - Radisson Blu Guwahati, Rebel Maharashtra MLAs' New Camp, Closes Fresh Bookings Till June 30. Deets InsideMeanwhile, Eknath Shinde tweeted, “How can Balasaheb Thackeray’s Shiv Sena support people who had a direct connection with the culprits of the Mumbai bomb blast, Dawood Ibrahim, and those responsible for taking the lives of innocent people of Mumbai? That’s why we took such a step, it’s better to die.” Also Read - Maharashtra Crisis: Shinde Camp Moves SC Against Disqualification Notice, Matter Likely to be Heard Today | Key PointsOne to two more MLAs will come and join us. With their support and other independents, our strength will be increased to 51. We will arrive at a decision in 3-4 days and thereafter we will directly go back to Maharashtra, said Rebel Shiv Sena MLA Deepak Kesarkar. Also Read - Say Trek? Not Mountains But Forts! Hike To History This Monsoon And Triumph These Thrilling Fort Treks In MaharashtraMaharashtra Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari writes to Union Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla regarding the security of MLAs (of Shinde Camp) and requested that adequate provision of Central Security forces be made and kept ready, in case required, to address the situation.Aaditya Thackeray said, “On May 20, CM Uddhav Thackeray called Eknath Shinde and asked him to become CM if he wanted to become so, but at that time, he did drama and started weeping. Just a month after, he broke into rebellion. But they (Shinde faction) aren’t capable of doing so, so this isn’t rebellion, this is separatism. They took undue advantage of CM Uddhav Thackeray’s ill-health to do all of this.”Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut said, “40 MLAs in Guwahati are living corpses, their souls are dead. Their bodies will be sent directly to the Assembly for post-mortem when they come back. They know what can happen in the fire that has been lit here.”Maharashtra Minister of Higher & Technical Education Uday Samant reached Guwahati in Assam and joined Eknath Shinde camp.NCP chief Sharad Pawar said, “Eknath Shinde and other MLAs were there with the NCP in the govt. They didn’t have any problems in the last 2.5 years. Why does it happen today only? It’s just an excuse. We will support CM Uddhav Thackeray till the last minute. Eknath Shinde and other MLAs who’ve gone with him to Guwahati have said to form a new alliance, but NCP and Congress policy is clear to support the coalition govt that we had formed. MVA govt is there (in Maharashtra) and we want to continue supporting it.”

Maharashtra Crisis: What Happened So Far
Maharashtra minister Uday Samant joins Eknath Shinde's camp
The Economic Times | 1 hour ago | 27-06-2022 | 12:03 am
The Economic Times
1 hour ago | 27-06-2022 | 12:03 am

Further deepening the crisis for the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government, another Maharashtra minister, Uday Samant, on Sunday reached Guwahati and joined the dissident camp of MLAs led by his cabinet colleague Eknath Shinde. Samant, who went incommunicado during the day, reached Guwahati from Surat. He came aboard a chartered flight and landed at Lokpriya Gopinath Bordoloi International (LGBI) Airport here along with three others, sources said. Samant's convoy, escorted by Assam Police, was seen entering the Radisson Blu Hotel off NH-37. So far, Maharashtra cabinet ministers Gulabrao Patil, Dada Bhuse, Sandipan Bhumre, and ministers of state Shamburaje Desai and Abdul Sattar have joined the rebel camp. Another minister, Bachu Kadu of Prahar Janshakti Party, and an Independent minister from Sena quota, Rajendra Yedravkar, have also been camping with Shinde. Dissident legislators of Shiv Sena, which heads the ruling coalition, have been camping in Guwahati, around 2,700 km away from Mumbai, since June 22. A group of rebel Shiv Sena MLAs, led by Shinde, were taken to Surat from Mumbai on June 21 and then flown to Guwahati the next day. Since then, several chartered flights carrying dissident MLAs have landed at LGBI Airport. The Maharashtra Legislature Secretariat on Saturday issued summonses to 16 of the rebel Shiv Sena MLAs, including Shinde, seeking written replies by the evening of June 27 to the complaints seeking their disqualification. The MLAs, after receiving the notices, have been huddling inside the hotel since Sunday morning, discussing various options to respond to the notices, sources said.

Maharashtra minister Uday Samant joins Eknath Shinde's camp