Sambhajirajes RS tenure ends; to join active politics

Times of India | 1 month ago | 04-05-2022 | 03:39 am

Sambhajirajes RS tenure ends; to join active politics

Kolhapur: Sambhajiraje Chhatrapati’s Rajya Sabha tenure formally ended on Tuesday. The descendant of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj and Shahu Maharaj said he would enter active politics, though he would reveal his future course of political action only after May 6, which is observed as Rajarshi Shahu Maharaj’s death anniversary.Sambhajiraje had been nominated to the Rajya Sabha via the President of India quota. The BJP had suggested his name to President Ram Nath Kovind in 2016 with an aim to get associated with the royal family and thereby make a dent in the Maratha vote bank, which traditionally leaned towards the Congress and the NCP. Sambhajiraje’s acceptance of the RS berth had not gone down well with NCP supremo Sharad Pawar, who has famously said: “Now Peshwas are nominating Chhatrapatis.” The comment was targeting then chief minister Devendra Fadnavis, who had taken the initiative in convincing Sambhajiraje to accept the nomination.Now, with his Rajya Sabha tenure ending, speculations are rife about his future political journey. Speaking to the media, Sambhajiraje said, “I will declare my decision after May 6, which is the death anniversary of Shahu Maharaj. I am sure I will enter active politics. I have made contacts and have followers in the state. Many in Delhi also want me to be here, but I will be active in Maharashtra politics.”On Tuesday morning, Sambhajiraje tweeted a photo of him reading a novel on Shivaji Maharaj. He captioned the photo: “Committed to ideology for a lifetime”. Several of his close confidants claim that he may not form his own political outfit, but align with either the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) or remain independent to pursue issue-based politics. Sources in the BJP claim that since he was reluctant to share BJP’s political platform and align his views with the party, he will not be given another chance to serve in the Rajya Sabha or in any other constitutional set-up. Sambhajiraje has played a crucial role in the Maratha reservation issue. After the reservation was scrapped, he got most of the demands pertaining to education and jobs for the Maratha youths approved by the state government.

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Rebel MLAs have monstrous ambitions, party doors shut for them, says Aaditya; asks them to contest polls again
The Indian Express | 1 hour ago | 26-06-2022 | 05:45 pm
The Indian Express
1 hour ago | 26-06-2022 | 05:45 pm

Slamming the dissident Shiv Sena MLAs for having “monstrous ambitions”, minister Aaditya Thackeray on Sunday said even if all the party legislators turn rebels, victory will always be of the party.Addressing the Sena workers in Mumbai for the second consecutive day, he also said that doors of the state and party are closed for the rebels MLAs.“Contest elections again, we will ensure you are defeated,” the 30-year-old son of Sena president and Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray said.Without naming the BJP, he said he felt ashamed that a party, which is in power at the Centre and Assam, have taken the MLAs from another ruling party from a different state and kept them in the north eastern state that is reeling under floods.The rebels were taken to Guwahati as “prisoners”. About 12 to 14 MLAs are still in touch with us, Thackeray said.“When these MLAs come to the state assembly, they should have the guts to see in our eyes and tell us what we have not done for them. The ambitions of these people are monstrous,” the minister for environment and tourism said.Sufficient development funds had been provided to all the legislators, he said, adding that the Shiv Sena has become the voice of the common people.Majority of party MLAs have sided with rebel party minister Eknath Shinde and they are currently camping at Guwahati in Assam, a BJP-ruled state. Shinde and his group have claimed that they are the “real Shiv Sena”. The rebel group said it enjoys a two-thirds majority in the legislature party and will prove its strength in the House. The dissidents have named their group as “Shiv Sena (Balasaheb)”.“There was a lot of respect for Eknath Shinde in Shiv Sena. Only in May he had been asked whether he wants to become the chief minister…I pity him, I am not angry. He could have rebelled in Thane or Mumbai and spelled out his ambitions instead of running away to Surat and then to Guwahati,” Thackeray said.Addressing the party workers on Saturday, Aaditya had given a subtle warning to the party rebels, saying that the road from Mumbai airport to Vidhan Bhavan, the state legislature complex here, goes via Worli.Worli, traditionally a Shiv Sena bastion in Mumbai, is the assembly constituency represented by Aaditya Thackeray.“The road from the airport to the Vidhan Bhavan passes via Worli. It’s good that the rebels left (Shiv Sena). There is no room for traitors in the party,” he had said.Aaditya has started holding meetings with the party workers and office-bearers from Saturday, which is being seen as a move to prevent any erosion of the cadre loyal to the Thackerays.The Mumbai civic polls are expected to be held later this year and the Shiv Sena, which has been ruling Asia’s largest civic body for nearly three decades, is striving to retain its hold over it.The Maharashtra legislature secretariat had on Saturday issued ‘summons’ 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.

Rebel MLAs have monstrous ambitions, party doors shut for them, says Aaditya; asks them to contest polls again
Maharashtra crisis: Quit as Shiv Sena MLAs and face fresh elections, Sanjay Raut dares party rebels
Times of India | 2 hours ago | 26-06-2022 | 04:59 pm
Times of India
2 hours ago | 26-06-2022 | 04:59 pm

MUMBAI: Amid the ongoing tussle for the control of the Shiv Sena between party president Uddhav Thackeray and dissident Eknath Shinde, party leader Sanjay Raut on Sunday dared the rebels to quit as MLAs and face fresh elections, but also said the doors of the party were open for those who wish to return. He expressed confidence that the ruling Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) comprising the Sena, NCP and Congress will survive the current crisis. Majority of Shiv Sena MLAs have sided with Shinde and are currently camping in Guwahati, plunging the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government led by Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, who heads the Sena, into a crisis. "My open challenge to the rebels is to resign and seek a fresh mandate from their electorate. In the past, Chhagan Bhujbal, Narayan Rane and their supporters had resigned as Sena MLAs to join other parties. Even (Union minister) Jyotiraditya Scindia supporters in Madhya Pradesh had resigned as Congress MLAs (in March 2020)," Raut told reporters here. The Sena rank and file are already on the ground waiting for a signal from the leadership, he said, hinting that the party was ready to take on the rebels. Raut scoffed at Shinde's tweet last night, in which he urged the Sena workers to have faith in him and that he was trying to save the party from the "python clutches" of MVA allies. "Don't know if these people are drugged. They have been in power for two-and-a-half years getting the creamest portfolios as ministers," Raut said. In a veiled warning, Raut said there can be a rebellion within the group of rebels as well. "Once they come back to Mumbai, they will know where exactly the rebellion is. We are against using the name of Shiv Sena and Balasaheb Thackeray by their group". Expressing confidence that the MVA will survive the crisis, Raut said, "The rebels claim to have the support of majority of MLAs. So why are they still in Guwahati? Come to Mumbai. I will myself go the airport to welcome them." "I won't be surprised if the rebels attack each other in the Guwahati hotel as they have been forcibly kept there," he claimed. He said the party doors are open for those who wish to come back. "I am in touch with many of them. Let's see if BJP makes Shinde a CM," he said. Referring to the reports of Shinde's secret meetings with BJP leaders, he further said," If you have guts, use your own father's name to get votes or your fathers in Vadodara, Surat, Delhi." He lashed out to at the BJP saying they are sponsoring the rebels when Assam is braving floods causing loss of lives and property. The hotel where the rebels are staying has 340 rooms. It is a 18-storey building and three floors have been booked for the rebels, he said. "I have been sending e-mails to the hotel asking for 40 rooms. I sent an e-mail to Assam chief minister as well who invited Uddhav Thackeray to Assam as a tourist. I wrote to him that we have to hold a programme to boost tourism in Maharashtra and Assam. So we need booking in the hotel. But I haven't received a reply yet," the Sena MP quipped. Meanwhile, in his weekly column 'Rokhthok' published in the Sena mouthpiece 'Saamana' on Sunday, Raut criticised Leader of Opposition in the Maharashtra Assembly Devendra Fadnavis, saying that if he was indeed behind the party legislators' rebellion, then has taken a wrong step. "The hunger of these rebels is huge. If Fadnavis plans to come back to power by encouraging them, then that dispensation will not last. Once again Fadnavis has taken a wrong decision. How will these rebels stay with Fadnavis, when they have left their own mother," Raut wrote. Shinde had a good chance of becoming a chief minister had he continued in Shiv Sena. Shinde would have been the chief minister if the BJP hadn't gone back on its word of rotational chief minister post, Raut said, adding, "It is surprising that shinde wants to go to BJP." The executive editor of 'Saamana' also wrote that rebel MLAs Pratap Sarnaik, Yamini Jadhav, Lata Sonawane and others have cases of money laundering and caste validity registered against them. "One of the rebel MLAs said he was free after the ED cases against him were cleared that he would do whatever BJP says," Raut said. Raut wondered why some rebel MLAs first went to Surat before flying to Guwahati, when the first batch had already reached Assam. "This is a case of research. If the rebellion is Shiv Sena's internal matter, why are the rebels kept in tight security at Surat and Guwahati," he asked. Earlier in the day, Raut posted a tweet targeted at the MLAs, in which he said, "How long will you hide in Guwahati, you will have to come to chowpatty," the Sena MP tweeted in Hindi along with a photo of the state Assembly's Deputy Speaker Narhari Zirwal looking into the distance. Key government establishments, including the Mantralaya (state secretariat), Vidhan Bhavan (legislature complex), Raj Bhavan and the chief minister's official bungalow 'Varsha' are located in the vicinity of the Girgaum beach, which is also known the Girgaum chowpatty, in south Mumbai. The Maharashtra legislature secretariat had on Saturday issued 'summons' 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.

Maharashtra crisis: Quit as Shiv Sena MLAs and face fresh elections, Sanjay Raut dares party rebels
20 Sena Rebels In Touch With Uddhav Thackeray, Say Sources: 10 Points
Ndtv | 4 hours ago | 26-06-2022 | 02:21 pm
Ndtv
4 hours ago | 26-06-2022 | 02:21 pm

Mumbai: At least 20 MLAs camping with rebel leader Eknath Shinde are reportedly in touch with Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, sources have said. NDTV has also learnt that some of the rebels are against a merger with the BJP. The Shiv Sena is planning to take action against Eknath Shinde and other rebel ministers. According to sources, ministers Eknath Shinde, Gulabrao Patil, Dada Bhuse are likely to lose their portfolios. Abdul Sattar and Shamburaje Desai - both Minister of State  - are also likely to face action.Despite being reduced to a minority, Team Thackeray has dismissed Mr Shinde's assertion that he will stake claim for the party symbol. In an open challenge to rebels, Aaditya Thackeray asked them to "defect and fight" the elections. "If you have guts, leave Shiv Sena - defect and fight. If you think what we have done is wrong, Uddhav (Thackeray) ji's leadership is wrong and we all are wrong, then resign and face elections. We are ready," he said.Differences have also appeared within the Eknath Shinde camp over plans to merge the group with the BJP. Mr Shinde also has the option of merging with Prahar Janshakti Party, whose chief, Maharashtra Minister Bachchu Kadu, is already camping with the rebels in Guwahati.The centre has increased security cover to 15 rebel Shiv Sena MLAs after cadres loyal to the Thackerays staged protests vandalised the offices of some of the rebel MLAs in various parts of the state.This morning, Sena's spokesperson Sanjay Raut took a swipe at the rebels, camping in BJP-ruled Assam. "How long will you hide in Guwahati," he asked in his tweet which included image of Deputy Speaker Narhari Zirwal, who has served notices to 16 rebel MLAs on the Sena disqualification plea.Eknath Shinde flew to Vadodara on a special flight last night from Assam's Guwahati where he is camping with nearly 40 rebel MLAs. Home Minister Amit Shah was also in Vadodara last night, people with direct knowledge of the matter said.After talks with Mr Fadnavis, Mr Shinde returned to the main city in BJP-ruled Assam. Mr Shinde and the rebels want to ally with their former partner, BJP, which they claim is a "natural ally" of the Sena. "We are traditionally the rivals of NCP and Congress, they are our primary challengers in constituencies. We requested CM Uddhav Thackeray that natural alliance should be done," said rebel MLA Chimanrao Patil in a video tweeted by Eknath Shinde.The rebels have said that they are still with the Shiv Sena and claim that they have a two-thirds majority. Rebel MLA Deepak Kesarkar further demanded recognition of their group 'Shiv Sena Balasaheb' and warned of going to court if it is not done and denied the role of the BJP behind their revolt.The Shiv Sena passed six resolutions at the National Executive meeting chaired by Uddhav Thackeray on Saturday. At the meeting at Sena Bhavan, Mr Thackeray was authorised to take action against the rebels. His side has also challenged a move by the rebels to call themselves "Shiv Sena Balasaheb Thackeray" in a letter to the Election Commission.The ongoing battle for the control of the Shiv Sena between Uddhav Thackeray and Eknath Shinde played out on the streets of Maharashtra on Saturday with the cadres loyal to the Thackerays staging protests against the rebels by defacing their banners, throwing stones, and vandalising the office of an MLA in various parts of the state. Comments

20 Sena Rebels In Touch With Uddhav Thackeray, Say Sources: 10 Points
Assam's Himanta Sarma, Asked About Role In Maharashtra Coup, Says This
Ndtv | 5 hours ago | 26-06-2022 | 02:04 pm
Ndtv
5 hours ago | 26-06-2022 | 02:04 pm

"People are extremely happy with the government," Himanta Biswa Sarma said.Guwahati: Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, accused of aiding a coup against Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray by hosting rebel Shiv Sena MLAs in Guwahati, today once again brushed off the allegations, saying that his "priority" were the people of Assam."People in Assam know my priority. People are extremely happy with the government. People monitoring the situation know that I am on the field 24 hours," Mr Sarma told NDTV from Silsar where he went to oversee relief work."This is my second visit to Silchar. Our priority is to restore electricity. I think Barak river is also swelling. Unless there is no fresh rain, I am hopeful in next 24 hours situation will be much better for the people of Silchar," he said.The flood situation in Assam remained grim on Sunday with over 40 lakh people affected in 34 districts of the state. Silchar in Cachar district is among the worst-affected areas.As many as 2.33 lakh have taken shelter in 637 relief camps of the northeastern state, which had been battling floods and landslides for the past two weeks.Despite the devastating floods, nearly 40 rebel MLAs from Uddhav Thackeray's party have been camping at a five-star hotel in Guwahati.Though the BJP has denied the accusation of engineering an "Operation Lotus", a young MP, known to be close to Mr Sarma, is reported to be in touch with the rebels, sources told NDTV.At least three Assam BJP ministers are also closely overseeing logistical matters at the Guwahati hotel, they added.Earlier, when asked about the MLAs, Mr Sarma has said that he was "happy" as the MLAs were helping promote tourism in Assam.PromotedListen to the latest songs, only on JioSaavn.com"Some people have come to Assam. They booked hotels. I am happy for that. You also come; it will help Assam's economy. Through this, Assam's tourism is also getting promoted," he said."Should I shut down Guwahati's hotels because there is flood in some part of the state. We are providing relief to the flood affected people. How can I shut the hotels in Guwahati. If tomorrow, you decide to come and stay in a hotel in Guwahati for 10 days, as a CM, should I say that you should not come," he added.

Assam's Himanta Sarma, Asked About Role In Maharashtra Coup, Says This