Maharashtra Govt Formation Updates: SC to hear Shiv Sena-Congress-NCP plea against Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari at 11.30 am tomorrow

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Maharashtra Govt Formation Updates: SC to hear Shiv Sena-Congress-NCP plea against Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari at 11.30 am tomorrow
  • 21:37 (IST)

    SC to hear Shiv Sena plea at 11.30 am tomorrow

     

  • 21:12 (IST)

    NCP-Shiv Sena-Congress will defeat BJP-led govt in Assembly Speaker's election: Nawab Malik

    The new BJP-led new government in Maharashtra will be defeated in the Assembly Speaker's election, NCP leader Nawab Malik told reporters. He expressed confidence that the NCP-Congress-Shiv Sena combine will come to power in the state.

  • 21:05 (IST)

    CJI in Tirupati

    Even as the Shiv Sena moved the apex court, Chief Justice of India Sharad Arvind Bobde is in Tirupati with his family. The CJI  offered prayers at the hill shrine of Lord Venkateswara near here on Saturday, a temple official said. 

    Before visiting the ancient temple, Justice Bobde, who assumed office as 47th Chief Justice of India (CJI) on Monday, participated in the sacred Sahasra Deepaalankaara ritual conducted to the processional idol of Lord Venkateswara at a mandapam close to the shrine.

    After an overnight stay on the hills, the CJI would again visit the shrine on Sunday morning too, the official added.

  • 21:05 (IST)

    Devendra Fadnavis misled governor, should resign: Congress' Ashok Chavan

    Congress leader Ashok Chavan claimed that 48 NCP MLAs, whose signatures were shown as proof of support for BJP and Ajit Pawar to stake claim to forming government, had attended the NCP meeting on Saturday evening. Hence, he said it appears that that Devendra Fadnavis misled the governor and called on him to resign as the chief minister.

    "Ajit Pawar should also quit, own up his mistake and return to the NCP," the Congress leader said.

  • 21:00 (IST)

    At least 9 MLAs who were with Ajit swear loyalty to Sharad
     
     

    At least nine NCP MLAs who attended swearing-in of Ajit Pawar as deputy chief minister of Maharashtra returned to the party fold and expressed solidarity with party chief Sharad Pawar on Saturday evening.

     These MLAs were present when BJP leader Devendra Fadnavis and NCP's Ajit Pawar were sworn in as chief minister and deputy chief minister at Raj Bhavan. Udgir MLA Sanjay Bansode was the latest legislator to turn up at the YB Chavan Centre here where party MLAs are attending a meeting convened by Sharad Pawar. 

     
    Bansode appeared at the venue in a dramatic manner, accompanied by NCP leader Shashikant Shinde, and Shiv Sena's Eknath Shinde and Milind Narvekar. "I did not go anywhere. I am with Pawar Saheb only," Bansode told reporters. 

  • 20:57 (IST)

    NCP MLA  'goes missing', complaint filed

    NCP MLA Daulat Daroda (Shahapur) has reportedly bee missing since Saturday morning, when he reached Raj Bhavan to attend the swearing in ceremony of Ajit Pawar and Devendra Fadnavis. Daroda's son Karan told PTI  that the MLA has been unreachable since reaching Mumbai. 

    Former MLA Pandurang Barora approached Shahapur police station and filed a missing complaint about Daroda, he added.

  • 20:44 (IST)

    Visuals from the NCP meeting in Mumbai

  • 20:43 (IST)

    Watch: Devendra Fadnavis sworn in as Maharahstra chief minister | Ten things to know

     

  • 20:35 (IST)

    NCP revokes Ajit Pawar's right to issue whip

     
     A resolution passed at the NCP meeting also said that Ajit Pawar's right to issue a whip was revoked. The party authorized Sharad Pawar and Jayant Patil to decide its stand in light of the developments.

  • 20:02 (IST)

    Fifty NCP MLAs present for meeting with Sharad Pawar

    NCP sources told ANI that a total 50 MLAs are present in the meeting with NCP Chief Sharad Pawar at YB Chavan Centre in Mumbai. 4 NCP MLAs including Ajit Pawar yet to come for the meeting. They are expected to come for the meeting shortly. All MLAs will be kept at a hotel in Mumbai.

  • 19:56 (IST)

    Ajit Pawar removed as NCP legislative party leader 

    Ajit Pawar has been removed as the leader of legislative party. "The decision to sack Ajit Pawar was taken at the meeting of the party's MLAs here," party sources told News18.

    Ajit has been asked to resign as Deputy CM of Maharashtra. He has asked for time to consider his decision, News18 reported.

  • 19:55 (IST)

    Cong MLAs may fly to Jaipur to escape poaching  



    With Maharashtra in political turmoil following a coup by NCP's Ajit Pawar who joined hands with the BJP on Saturday, MLAs of the ally Congress are likely to fl y to Jaipur on Sunday to ward off any poaching bid.   "We may go to Jaipur tomorrow. We will be there until the special session of the state Legislative Assembly is convened for newly-elected MLAs to take oath, election of Speaker and trust vote," Congress MLA Nana Patole told PTI on Saturday night.  

  • 19:48 (IST)

    Sena should protest against formation of BJP-led govt, says Digvijaya Singh

     
    Congress veteran Digvijaya Singh told the Shiv Sena to "take to the streets" of Mumbai to protest against the formation of a new BJP-led government in Maharashtra, reported PTI
     
     
    He also claimed that NCP leader Ajit Pawar, who took oath as deputy chief minister, had joined the new government alone, and no other NCP MLA was with him.
     
     
    Alleging that the swearing in of Devendra Fadnavis as the chief minister was unconstitutional, he said:"Fadnavis often raised the issue of corruption cases
    against Ajit Pawar during the election campaign. Now they have come together. What will happen to these corruption cases?"

  • 19:35 (IST)

    Sena asks for floor test in 24 hrs in petition: News18

    News18 reported that Congress leader Abhishek Manu Singhvi  will represent the Shiv Sena in the apex court if there is a hearing tonight. The Shiv Sena, in its petition, alleges that this is a minority government and the governor exercised his discretion illegally. The petition has also requested that a floor test be conducted within 24 hours to ward off horsetrading, News18 reported.

     
     

  • 19:26 (IST)

    Prakash Ambedkar takes dig at Sharad Pawar

    Vanchit Bahujan Aghadi (VBA) leader Prakash Ambedkar has sought to link Saturday's political developments in Maharashtra with Sharad Pawar's recent meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Delhi, though he didn't name the NCP chief.

    "Some leaders of the NCP met with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and (BJP chief) Amit Shah. The purpose (of the meeting) was stated to be to discuss issues concerning rain-hit farmers. Two days ago, Maharashtra governor announced compensation to farmers. The perception that something was fishy started developing from that point (Pawar-Modi meet)," Ambedkar told reporters.  

  • 19:14 (IST)

    Congress leaders Ahmed Patel, Mallikarjun Kharge to return to Delhi

    Congress leaders Ahmed Patel, mallikarjun Kharge who had been sent to Maharahstra to lead talks of government formation with the NCP and Shiv Sena will return to Delhi on Saturday, reports News18. The senior leaders are expected to meet party interim president Sonia Gandhi tomorrow. 

  • 18:42 (IST)

    Shiv Sena files writ petition in SC

     

    The Shiv Sena has filed a writ petition in the Supreme Court against Maharashtra governor Bhagat Singh Koshyar and the BJP's actions to form the government in Maharashtrai. The party, in its  petition to the apex court, has claimed that the governor's actions are "arbitrary".

  • 18:33 (IST)

    Will cross 170 mark, says BJP leader Girish Mahajan

    Claiming that the BJP enjoyed the support of the entire NCP, BJP leader Girish Mahajan told News18, "We have clear majority with BJP MLAs, Indpendent MLAs and support from NCP leaders. We will cross the 170 mark."

  • 18:28 (IST)

    Hoarding put up in Baramati in support of Sharad Pawar

    The caption on the hoarding, with a photograph of Pawar senior, put up near the Baramati municipal council building, read 'we are with an 80-year-old fighter'.  The hoarding was the cynosure of all eyes before it was removed a couple of hours later. Police said the hoarding was removed by civic officials because it was put up without permission.  

  • 18:25 (IST)

    Experts differ over timing of anti-defection law: PTI

    Legal experts have different opinions as to when the anti-defection law comes into play with one of them saying it has no "impact" at the time of government formation while another felt that it will apply irrespective of the fact where MLAs have taken oath.

    Senior lawyer and constitutional law expert Rakesh Dwivedi, when asked as to when and how the anti-defection law will operate in Maharashtra's case, said it has no impact at the time of government formation which always takes place before oath taking of MLAs in the Assembly.


     

  • 18:23 (IST)

    I am with Sharad Pawar, says NCP MLA Atul Benke

  • 18:23 (IST)

    Akhilesh Yadav on political situation in Maharashtra

  • 18:20 (IST)

    Uddhav Thackeray leaves from Shiv Sena meeting

    Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray has left from the party meeting at the Lalit Hotel, reports ANI.

  • 17:49 (IST)

    MLA Dilip Bankar says he is still with NCP

    Dilip Bankar, one of the eleven MLAs who was present for the swearing-in ceremony at the Raj Bhawan on Saturday morning, has tweeted that he is still very much with the NCP. Expressing belief in party chief Sharad Pawar's leadership, the MLA from Niphad claimed that he had no information of what would take place at the Raj Bhavan. He also reiterated his commitment ot the party's position.

    Other MLAs who attended the swearing-in ceremony have also claimed not to have prior knowledge of the ceremony.

  • 17:31 (IST)

    Dhananjay Munde, eight MLAs reach NCP meeting

    NCP leader Dhananjay Munde, who, along with Ajit Pawar, had reportedly called 11 NCP MLAs for the swearing-in ceremony in the morning, has reached the YB Chavan Centre. Eight of the 11 MLAs are accompanying him to the party meet, reported News18-Lokmat. 

    Munde's absence from the scene had earlier triggered rumours about his exit from the party.

  • 17:20 (IST)

    Stable govt will be formed under Devendra Fadnavis, sign of mature democracy, says JP Nadda

    Congratulating the people of Maharashtra, BJP working president JP Nadda said that the developments in Maharshtra were a sign of a mature democracy. 

    "A stable government will be formed under the leadership of Devendra Fadnavis in Maharashtra and I should congratulate people of Maharashtra. It is sign of mature democracy," PTI reported him as saying.

  • 17:03 (IST)

    Breaking: NCP leaders reach out to Ajit Pawar

    Senior NCP leaders including Sunil Tatkare and Dilip Walse Patil are holding a meeting with Ajit Pawar at his brother Sriniwas Pawar's residence, reports ANI.

  • 16:55 (IST)

    Breaking: Meeting of NCP leaders underway

    Meeting of NCP leaders with party chief Sharad Pawar is underway at YB Chavan Centre in Mumbai. Party MLAs wil later be taken outside the state, possibly to Bhopal, reports News18.

  • 16:44 (IST)

    We will form 'Aghadi' govt: Nawab Malik

    "Ten party MLAs had gone in the morning, four of them have returned; we have also established contact with majority MLAs,", said NCP leader Nawab Malik.

    He also exuded confidence that the NCP-Congress-Shiv Sena will come to power in the state. "The unethical government under Fadnavis has no majority. We will defeat the BJP government in the Vidhan Sabha and form an 'Aghadi' government in the state," he said. 

  • 16:37 (IST)

    Uddhav Thackeray to meet Shiv Sena MLAs

     

    Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray left to meet party MLAs, who are currently lodged in Hotel Lalit in Mumbai, reported News18.

  • 16:32 (IST)

    Will provide stable government: Devendra Fadnavis

    Addressing party workers at the BJP headquarters, newly- sworn in Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis said that he will provide a stable government. 

  • 16:16 (IST)

    Photos: Newly sworn-in Maharashtra CM Devendra Fadnavis arrives at state BJP office in Mumbai's Nariman Point

  • 16:07 (IST)

    BJP threatens Ajit Pawar with 'jail': Congress leader Randeep Surjewala 

    Congress leader Randeep Surjewala hits out at BJP over the dramatic turn of events in Maharashtra. While addressing the media in Congress' headquarters he alleged that BJP threatened Ajit Pawar with 'jail'.  He further said that 'power-hungry' BJP has murdered democracy.  

  • 16:03 (IST)

    Breaking: Congress begins media presser in New Delhi

  • 15:57 (IST)

    Congress to move party MLAs to Jaipur claim sources

    As events took a sudden dramatic turn in Maharashtra on Saturday with a faction of NCP led by Ajit Pawar joined hands with BJP and with BJP's Devendra Fadnavis taking oath as chief minister, Congress is now planning to move its MLAs out of the state.


    "Congress is planning to move its MLAs out of Maharashtra. They will be moved to a Congress-ruled state," Congress party source said on Saturday. According to multiple reports, these MLAs are likely to be moved to Jaipur.


    Earlier in the day, Congress leader Ahmed Patel termed Ajit Pawar's support to BJP to form the government in Maharashtra as a "black spot" in the history of the state, stating that nothing can be more "shameful" than this

  • 15:46 (IST)

    Breaking: 9 NCP MLAs en route to Delhi

    At least 9 NCP MLAs backing Ajit Pawar-Devendra Fadnavis alliance are currently on their way to New Delhi on a chartered flight, according to CNN-News18 reports. MLAs include Anil Patil, Dilip Bankar, Babasaheb Patil. 

  • 15:31 (IST)

    They betrayed Balasaheb's principles: BJP mocks Sena


    "I don’t want to say anything about those who couldn’t stay true to Balasaheb’s ideals? Their opposition to Congress was well-known. Those who dump their entire legacy, are teaching us. Those who are willing to compromise for power, shouldn’t talk about Shivaji," Union law minister and BJP leader Ravi Shankar Prasad said while addressing a media press conference in Delhi. 

  • 15:26 (IST)

    BJP won 70% success rate in 2019 polls claims Ravi Shankar Prasad

    Ravi Shankar Prasad claimed that the BJP had won a 70 percent success rate in the 150 seats that were contested in Maharashtra's 2019 polls. The Congress and NCP leaders said the mandate with them was to sit in opposition then how did they think of forming a government, he questioned.

    He hit out the Shiv Sena, Congress for blaming the BJP, saying that NCP leader Ajit Pawar allying with BJP is murder of democracy. He hit back saying that "When Shiv Sena breaks a 30-year-old alliance and sides with the opposition, isn't that the murder of democracy?"

  • 15:21 (IST)

    Prospect of Fadnavis as CM led to Sena's victory in polls says Ravi Shankar Prasad 

    Throughout the election campaign, Devendra Fadnavis' name was projected as the Maharashtra chief minister, said Union minister Ravi Shankar Prasad during the media press briefing in Delhi. He claimed that the support base of BJP and the prospect of Devendra Fadnavis becoming chief minister, played a crucial role in the success of Shiv Sena candidates.

  • 15:11 (IST)

    'Mandate in favour of Fadnavis'; BJP tells media

    The BJP party briefed the media on Saturday over the developing situation in Maharashtra in a dramatic move post swearing-in of Devendra Fadnavis as chief minister early Saturday. Union minister Ravi Shankar Prasad and BJP leader said that Fadnavis had the people's mandate. He also said that in the five years as chief minister, Fadnavis had no corruption scandals and ran a clean government. 

  • 15:04 (IST)

    Breaking: BJP begins media briefing on the situation in Maharashtra 

  • 14:57 (IST)

    NCP to shift its MLAs out of Maharashtra claims report

    According to India Today sources, post the slated 4:30 pm NCP meeting, the party is likely to shift its MLAs out of Maharashtra to prevent horsetrading by BJP. MLA's likely to be shifted either to Madhya Pradesh or Rajasthan. 

  • 14:54 (IST)

    'Now you understand what I meant': Nitin Gadkari on Maharashtra govt formation

    Reacting to the dramatic turn of events in the government formation in Maharashtra, Union minister and BJP leader, Nitin Gadkari said, "I had earlier said anything can happen in cricket and politics, now you can understand what I meant."

  • 14:52 (IST)

    Haryana Manohar Lal Khattar congratulates Fadnavis, Ajit Pawar on being sworn-in as CM, Dy CM

    Haryana chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar congratulated Devendra Fadnavis and Ajit Pawar for taking oath as the chief minister and deputy chief minister of Maharashtra respectively on Saturday and said the state will touch new heights of development under their leadership. 

  • 14:46 (IST)

    Congress planning to shift its MLAs out of Maharashtra claim sources


    According to sources quoted by India Today, the Congress party is planning to shift its MLAs out of Maharashtra and is likely to move them to Madhya Pradesh till the trust vote is concluded. This move comes to avoid horse-trading by the BJP, ahead of the floor tests which is slated to be held on 30 November. 

  • 14:38 (IST)

    Ajit Pawar blackmailed into joining hands with BJP, claims Sena leader Sanjay Raut

    Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut on Saturday claimed that NCP's Ajit Pawar was "blackmailed" into joining hands with the BJP to form government in Maharashtra. He said Ajit Pawar might return to the NCP fold.

    BJP's Devendra Fadnavis on Saturday took oath as Maharashtra chief minister, while Ajit Pawar as his deputy. "NCP leader Dhananjay Munde has been contacted. Ajit Pawar may also return (to NCP fold). We have information how Ajit Pawar has been blackmailed and will expose this soon," Raut told reporters.

    Munde, who is said to have been in touch with Fadnavis since the last few days, had gone incommunicado. He is said be supporting Ajit Pawar. Munde was elected from Parli where he defeated his cousin and BJP leader Pankaja Munde.

    "The new government was formed at 7 in the morning. In the cover of darkness only sins are committed," Raut said.

    - PTI

  • 14:29 (IST)

    Clandestine swearing-in of Devendra Fadnavis black day for Maharashtra: Ahmed Patel

    The "clandestine" manner in which Devendra Fadnavis was sworn-in as the chief minister of Maharashtra will be written in black ink in the history of the state, senior Congress leader Ahmed Patel said on Saturday.

    He also accused the BJP of crossing the limits of "shamelessness", adding democracy stands "shattered" after the saffron party formed the government by joining hands with NCP president Sharad Pawar's nephew Ajit Pawar. Patel recalled that Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari had not invited the Congress to stake claim to form the government in the state after the BJP, Shiv Sena and NCP were asked to do so earlier this month.

  • 14:22 (IST)

    Sharad Pawar should join NDA, will be rewarded: Union minister Ramdas Athawale 

     

    Meanwhile, Union minister Ramdas Athawale squarely blamed the Shiv Sena for the dramatic turn of events in Maharashtra and urged NCP chief Sharad Pawar to walk over to the NDA camp, hinting that he might be rewarded with a plum portfolio at the Centre.

    He said Pawar should also consider backing his rebellious nephew Ajit Pawar - sworn in as the deputy chief minister of Maharashtra. "Sharad Pawar, too, should consider revising his stance and joining the NDA. He may get some good portfolio at the Centre," Athawale said when asked about the difficulty the NCP faction headed by Ajit Pawar might face in engineering a split before the floor test on 30 November.

    Athawale, who heads the RPI  a Maharasthra-based pro-Dalit outfit  was here to attend a function in his capacity as the Minister of State for Social Justice and Empowerment in the Narendra Modi government.

    -PTI

  • 14:15 (IST)

    BJP to hold press conference at 2:30 pm

    News18 reports Maharashtra's BJP unit likely to address a press conference at 2:30 pm. Earlier today, Shiv Sena and NCP addressed a joint press conference at 2:30 pm. It was followed by a press conference by Congress which was attended by Ahmad Patel and Mallikarjun Kharge.

  • 14:03 (IST)

    'Will fight on political, legal fronts': Congress leader Ahmed Patel 

    Congress leader Ahmed Patel claimed that legal opinions have begun and that the party is consulting lawyers. "We will fight this on both fronts, political and legal," he added. 

    All our MLAs are intact...we can form a government in Maharashtra. We will try both politically and legally...all 3 of us (NCP, Congress and Shiv Sena) are together." he said. 

Maharashtra Govt formation Updates: The Supreme Court will hear tomorrow at 11.30 am the joint plea of Shiv Sena, Nationalist Congress Party and Congress against the decision of Maharashtra governor inviting Devendra Fadnavis to form the government.

The new BJP-led new government in Maharashtra will be defeated in the Assembly Speaker's election, NCP leader Nawab Malik told reporters. He expressed confidence that the NCP-Congress-Shiv Sena combine will come to power in the state.

The NCP in its meeting at the YB Chavan Centre decided to remove Ajit Pawar as the leader of the legislative party. NCP chief Sharad Pawar was present at the meeting

The Shiv Sena has filed a writ petition in the Supreme Court against the "arbitrary, malafide actions/decisions" of Maharashtra governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari.

NCP leader Dhananjay Munde, who, along with Ajit Pawar, had reportedly called 11 NCP MLAs for the swearing-in ceremony in the morning, has reached the YB Chavan Centre.

Four of the nine NCP MLAs who had earlier taken a chartered flight to Delhi, are back in Mumbai, reports News18. These MLAs include Sunil Shelke and Dilip Bankar.

Stepping up efforts to win back Ajit Pawar, senior party leaders including Sunil Tatkare and Dilip Walse Patil are holding a meeting with Ajit at his brother Sriniwas Pawar's residence, reports ANI.

A separate meeting of Sharad Pawar with NCP MLAs is also underway at the YB Chavan centre at Mumbai.

Congress leader Randeep Surjewala hits out at BJP over the dramatic turn of events in Maharashtra. While addressing the media in Congress' headquarters he alleged that BJP threatened Ajit Pawar with 'jail'. He further said that 'power-hungry' BJP has murdered democracy.

As events took a sudden dramatic turn in Maharashtra on Saturday with a faction of NCP led by Ajit Pawar joined hands with BJP and with BJP's Devendra Fadnavis taking oath as chief minister, Congress is now planning to move its MLAs out of the state. According to multiple reports, these MLAs are likely to be moved to Jaipur.

"Congress is planning to move its MLAs out of Maharashtra. They will be moved to a Congress-ruled state," Congress party source said on Saturday.

"I don’t want to say anything about those who couldn’t stay true to Balasaheb’s ideals? Their opposition to Congress was well-known. Those who dump their entire legacy, are teaching us. Those who are willing to compromise for power, shouldn’t talk about Shivaji," Union law minister and BJP leader Ravi Shankar Prasad said while addressing a media press conference in Delhi.

The BJP party briefed the media on Saturday over the developing situation in Maharashtra in a dramatic move post swearing-in of Devendra Fadnavis as chief minister early Saturday. Union minister Ravi Shankar Prasad and BJP leader said that Fadnavis had the people's mandate.

NCP chief Sharad Pawar will hold a meeting of his party MLAs in Mumbai at 4.30 pm, in the wake of his nephew and legislature party leader Ajit Pawar joining hands with the BJP to form the government in Maharashtra on SaturdayAccording to India Today sources, post the slated 4:30 pm NCP meeting, the party is likely to shift its MLAs out of Maharashtra to prevent horsetrading by BJP. MLA's likely to be shifted either to Madhya Pradesh or Rajasthan.

The "clandestine" manner in which Devendra Fadnavis was sworn-in as the chief minister of Maharashtra will be written in black ink in the history of the state, senior Congress leader Ahmed Patel said on Saturday. He also accused the BJP of crossing the limits of "shamelessness", adding democracy stands "shattered" after the saffron party formed the government by joining hands with NCP president Sharad Pawar's nephew Ajit Pawar.

Patel recalled that Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari had not invited the Congress to stake claim to form the government in the state after the BJP, Shiv Sena and NCP were asked to do so earlier this month.

Congress leader Ahmed Patel claimed that legal opinions have begun and that the party is consulting lawyers. "We will fight this on both fronts, political and legal," he added. "All our MLAs are intact...we can form a government in Maharashtra. We will try both politically and legally...all 3 of us (NCP, Congress and Shiv Sena) are together," he said.

Congress leader Ahmed Patel says the oath-taking ceremony took place in complete secrecy, which indicates "something is wrong here" while briefing the media in Mumbai.  

"Ajit Pawar may have gone and supported the BJP but at ground level no party worker will agree to such a thing. The MLAs, who he claims have supported him, will also not agree to this. He will not be able to prove their support in the Assembly," said Sharad Pawar.

Sharad Pawar's daughter and senior NCP leader Supriya Sule has confirmed that the Nationalist Congress Party has split from the middle in a political war that has not even left the dominant political family untouched. Sule has put up a story on Whatsapp which states: Party and family split.

Ajit Pawar, the nephew of Sharad Pawar is said to have back stabbed his uncle to ally with the BJP. However, several reports also quote sources to state that Sharad Pawar was in fact kept in loop all along.

NCP chief Sharad Pawar and Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray will address a joint press conference at 12.30 pm today. The two party leaders have so far maintained that Ajit Pawar is alone in supporting BJP, while Sharad Pawar remains true to his word. According to CNN-News18 reports Congress leader Randeep Singh Surjewala is likely to address the media at 11:30 am today.

"I have no comments on what Ajit Pawar has said, but what he has done is for everyone to see. He has backstabbed people of Maharashtra and NCP chief Sharad Pawar. He has committed a sin" Sanjay Raut said. He also claimed that Sena is in constant touch with Sharad Pawar and the latter has no role to play in this murky deal.

In another turn of event, Sharad Pawar has claimed that he did not know about Ajit Pawar's move until 7 am in the morning today. He refused to comment any further on the issue and said he will hold a press conference later.

Sharad Pawar-led Nationalist Congress Party is now officially in alliance with Bharatiya Janata Party Ajit Pawar took oath as deputy chief minister of Maharashtra. The surprising development came after NCP chief, only last night, claimed that Uddhav Thackeray will be the next chief minister of Maharashtra.

Seems like it is back to square one for Maharashtra government formation. After NCP chief Sharad Pawar saying that Uddhav was the "unanimous" chief minister's choice among the newly-formed allies Congress-NCP-Sena, leaders of all the three parties have given vague and unclear statements to the press. While Congress' Ahmed Patel and Prithviraj Chavan said that the talks will continue tomorrow, as today's meeting was "inconclusive", NCP's Nawab Malik said, "We have asked Uddhav Thackeray to be the chief minister."

The three parties have another meeting scheduled for Saturday and they plan to meet the Governor tomorrow.

Minutes after the "decisive" meeting between the Congress-NCP-Shiv Sena concluded and NCP supremo Sharad Pawar asserted that there was consensus over Uddhav as the next Maharashtra chief minister, Congress leader Ahmed Patel said that the talks were inconclusive and "discussions will continue tomorrow." Patel's comments are in line with Uddhav who said that while the three alliance parties came to a conclusion on many things, "we don't want to leave anything undecided."

"The first time we have come together like this and we want unity on everything between us and then we will come to you. We will not go before the janta without sorting out all our issues. Everything will be dealt with. It was the first meeting between all the three parties. Finishing touches are being given to the alliance. I don't want any issue to be left discussed between three parties before going public," reports quoted Uddhav as saying.

Earlier in the evening, the newly formed Shiv Sena-Congress-NCP alliance unanimously proposed Uddhav's name for the post of chief minister in Maharashtra, NCP chief Sharad Pawar said. "Uddhav will lead the Maharashtra government," Pawar said after an hour-long meeting with top leaders in Mumbai.

The meeting between Congress, NCP and Shiv Sena at Nehru Centre in South Mumbai concluded. NCP chief Sharad Pawar, who was the first to walk out after the meeting, said, "Tomorrow a press conference will be held by the three parties. Discussions are continuing. Tomorrow we will also decide when to approach the Governor." The three parties will hold a joint press conference on Saturday. Coming out of the venue as the meeting ended, Uddhav says, "We have decided on the future course of Maharashtra."

Congress and NCP have reportedly said that Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray's voice is final in the party which won't leave any space for any dissent. NCP chief Sharad Pawar also confirmed that there was consensus among the three alliance partners that the Sena chief should be the new Chief Minister of Maharashtra. A joint briefing of Congress-NCP-Shiv Sena is expected tomorrow (Saturday). Sources speaking to NDTV also said that the NCP, Congress have insisted on Uddhav being the new Chief Minister in the meeting between the three alliance partners which is currently underway.

According to latest reports, the Shiv Sena-NCP-Congress will stake claim to form government in Maharashtra either late night on Friday or Saturday morning, NCP's chief spokesman Nawab Malik has said. Malik also said that Congress, NCP and Shiv Sena will give priority to running the government for five years. "Some leaders of the three parties will meet in the evening (on Friday). They will discuss all the points and take the final call. We will stake claim to form the government late tonight or in the morning tomorrow," Malik said. He reiterated the chief minister's post will go to the Shiv Sena.

Top leaders of the Shiv Sena, the Congress and the NCP have started the meeting to give shape to new government to be led by the Uddhav Thackeray-headed party in Maharashtra. Eknath Shinde, Subhash Desai, Sanjay Raut (all Shiv Sena), Ahmed Patel, Mallikarjun Kharge, K C Venugopal, Avinash Pande, Balasaheb Thorat, Prithviraj Chavan (Congress), Praful Patel, Jayant Patil and Ajit Pawar (NCP) are part of the meeting. Deliberations will focus on finalising a common minimum programme (CMP) and power-sharing between the three parties in the new government.

Mumbai Congress leaders, including Mallikarjun Kharge, and Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray, arrive at Nehru Centre in Mumbai's Worli for the crucial Congress-Shiv Sena-NCP meeting.

Earlier, Kharge had said that a key media briefing will be held after the meeting concludes. According to reports, the three parties are expected to stake claim to form the new government in Maharashtra after the meeting. However, at this point everything is speculative with all eyes on the NCP-Congress-Sena meeting.

Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge is in Mumbai, ANI reported. Speaking to reporters, Kharge said, "We are going for meeting (Congress-NCP-Shiv Sena) where discussions will be held. We will do a briefing after the meeting." Meanwhile, Sena MLA Sunil Prabhu said all the party MLAs have been asked to stay together, while another legislator, Uday Samant, said no one can poach the Sena lawmakers. "We are together in Mumbai due to the fast-changing political developments," he was quoted as saying by reports.

A petition has been filed in Supreme Court by a Maharashtra resident SI Singh against the post-poll alliance of NCP-Shiv Sena-Congress. The petition sought a direction from the apex court to restrain Governor from inviting Congress and NCP to form government in the state against the mandate of people, reports ANI.

Union Minister Nitin Gadkari spoke about Maharashtra government formation on Friday and said that there were "ideological differences" among Congress, Shiv Sena and NCP to form an alliance. "The government will not go much ahead even if it is formed," he added.  As the Congress, NCP and Shiv Sena are slated to hold final deliberations over government formation today, Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut said that the chief minister will be from his party and will remain incumbent for the full term of the alliance government.

Amid hectic political activity for government formation in Maharashtra, Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray on Friday met his party's legislators in Mumbai and told them that the process to form a Sena-led dispensation in the state was in the final stages.

Thackeray met the legislators to apprise them of the government formation process and meetings of Congress-NCP leaders in Delhi, Sena MLA Bhaskar Jadhav told PTI.

"Uddhav ji met and told us that the process of formation of Sena-led government is in the final stages," he said.

A key meeting is currently underway between Congress, Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leaders and other alliance partners, in Mumbai. While Shiv Sena, NCP and Congress seem to be close to the final stage before government formation in Maharashtra, Congress leader Sanjay Nirupam expressed doubts over the stability of the alliance.

Taking to Twitter, Nirupam warned his own party leaders against forming the government with the support of Shiv Sena. "Our leaders saying that we are taking the risk of joining hands with the Shiv Sena to stop the BJP. But how long will the government of three parties work?" Nirupam's Hindi tweet read.

The next Maharashtra chief minister will be from the Shiv Sena and the Sharad Pawar-led NCP has not demanded the top post during state-level meetings on government formation, Congress leader Manikrao Thakare said. Sources suggested that the chief ministerial post may go to the Shiv Sena for five years.​ Thakare also said that leaders of the three parties will sit together later on Friday to clarify some pending issues and also to decide the time to approach Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari to stake a claim for forming the government.

As the government formation process picked momentum in Maharashtra, Shiv Sena president​ Uddhav Thackeray on Friday met his party's legislators to discuss the political situation in the state. Sena MLA Bhaskar Jadhav told PTI that whatever decision Thackeray takes will be binding on all legislators of Shiv Sena. "We would like​ Uddhav ji or Aaditya Thackeray to be the chief minister," he added

As the Congress, NCP and Shiv Sena are slated to hold final deliberations over government formation today, Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut said that the chief minister will be from his party and will remain incumbent for the full term of the alliance government. Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray is currently meeting party legislators at his residence Matoshree. Speaking to PTI, Sena legislator Bhaskar Jadhav said the party chief is expected to apprise MLAs of developments in the government formation talks with the Congress and NCP

NCP chief Sharad Pawar has finally 'outwitted' the 'so-called Chanakya of the Indian politics', the party said on Friday, as it inches closer to forming a government with Shiv Sena and Congress in Maharashtra. The NCP's chief spokesperson Nawab Malik also reiterated that the throne of Delhi could not make Maharashtra bow before it.

It is believed that Malik's jibe was directed at Union home minister and BJP president Amit Shah, who is often credited for being instrumental in the BJP's victories in several polls and government formations in the country.

Top sources tell News18 that Shiv Sena chief is not keen to take up the post of chief minister. Instead Sena leaders like Sanjay Raut, Arvind Sawant likely to be named to take up the post. But according to ANI, Raut denied these claims. When asked if Sharad Pawar had suggested his (Raut's) name for the post of Maharashtra chief minister, the Sena leader said that it was incorrect. "People of Maharashtra want Uddhav Thackeray as the chief minister." he added.

According to sources, Sharad Pawar briefed Uddhav Thackeray on Thursday night about his discussion with Congress interim president Sonia Gandhi and other leaders over the modalities of government formation and the basics of Common minimum programme decided by the Congress and NCP.

"Our Common Minimum Programme is based on the issues of common man, relief to farmers, job creation etc. while issues like Hindutva or Bharat Ratna to Savarkar etc are not part of our Common Minimum Programme , these issues were not even discussed in any of our meetings," a senior leader of NCP told ANI.

Shiv Sena won't side with the BJP even if offered Lord Indra's throne, Sena MP Sanjay Raut said on Friday. Talking to reporters, Raut reiterated that his party will get the Maharashtra CM's post when the three-party alliance with Congress and NCP assumes power. "The time for offers has ended," Raut said, when asked about reports that the BJP had agreed to share the CM's post with the Sena.

Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray and his MLA-son Aaditya met Sharad Pawar at the NCP president's residence 'Silver Oak' in South Mumbai on Thursday night. The Sena's Rajya Sabha member Sanjay Raut and NCP leader Ajit Pawar were also present during the meet.

The crucial meeting took place for over an hour as the former NDA ally continued its effort to form government in Maharashtra with the support of the maha aghadi alliance – the NCP and the Congress.

The Thackerays called on Pawar, a Rajya Sabha MP, after he arrived in Mumbai from New Delhi in the evening. However, no Congress leader was present at the meet.

The meeting took place on a day when Congress leader Prithviraj Chavan said in New Delhi that a decision will be taken on Friday on the architecture of alliance for Maharashtra government formation. He said when Congress will announce the Common Minimum Programme, it shall disclose the power-sharing formula.

Sources said the three parties are likely to make a formal announcement on Friday about joining hands to take a shot at power in the state.

The Sena chief will address a meeting of party MLAs and senior leaders on Friday during which he is expected to deliberate on the party's line of action in the backdrop of the three main non-BJP parties making efforts to form government in Maharashtra, a party leader said.

In a marathon meeting on Wednesday, the Congress and NCP leaders held deliberations to finalise details of their alliance as they work to form a new government in the state in tie up with Sena.

Congress leader KC Venugopal said on Thursday, "We have apprised the CWC members of the latest political situation in Maharashtra. Today, Congress-NCP discussion will continue. I think, tomorrow, we will probably have a decision in Mumbai."

A key meeting of top Congress and NCP leaders was conducted to discuss the alliance with Shiv Sena on Wednesday.

The Congress Working Committee earlier in the day granted in-principle approval to the party to form government in Maharashtra along with the NCP and the Shiv Sena, sources said. In a meeting chaired by Congress president Sonia Gandhi at her 10, Janpath residence in New Delhi, the party's highest decision-making body also deliberated on the Maharashtra political scenario, they said.

"On Saturday, a letter signed by the MLAs of the three parties will be handed over to Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari," Sanjay Raut told NDTV. Sources in the Sena and NCP added that "if all goes well, a swearing in ceremony will take place on Sunday or Monday."

Congress sources said the final decision on the government formation in Maharashtra is expected by Friday. "The CWC has broadly agreed to go ahead with government formation with the Shiv Sena and the NCP," the source said. "Another meeting between the Congress and the NCP will be held on Thursday and a final meeting with Shiv Sena will take place on Friday in Mumbai. The decision on government formation in Maharashtra will be announced in Mumbai on Friday," the source said.

Sonia Gandhi was advised to "go ahead" with the Maharashtra alliance, despite her reservations, and told that the "greater enemy, in order to fight communalism, is the BJP", NDTV quoted sources as saying. Final talks may take place in Mumbai.

After meetings on Wednesday with the NCP at its chief Sharad Pawar's home, the Congress said "some aspects of the alliance" were still to be discussed. "There can't be any government in Maharashtra without the Shiv Sena, NCP and Congress. We are trying our best to resolve issues," said NCP leader Nawab Malik, addressing the media along with Congress leader Prithviraj Chavan, who simply said the talks will continue.

The chief minister's post in Maharashtra is most likely to be on a rotational basis, with the first half of the five-year term to be given to the Shiv Sena and the latter to the Nationalist Congress Party, NCP sources told PTI. The Congress is likely to have the deputy chief minister's post for the full term, they said.

The Congress Working Committee (CWC) reviewed the scenario in Maharashtra on Thursday, a day after it held a marathon meeting with the NCP on forming an alliance together with Shiv Sena to form government in the state.

After the meeting, Congress general secretary KC Venugopal said that the CWC was briefed on the discussion between NCP and Congress on Wednesday. However, a final decision on Maharashtra is expected by Friday, PTI quoted Congress sources as saying. According to sources, the CWC broadly agreed to go ahead with government formation with Shiv Sena and the NCP.

Another meeting between Congress and NCP is scheduled to be held Thursday night and a final meeting with Shiv Sena will happen Friday in Mumbai.

***

Even as Shiv Sena continues to exude confidence about forming a government in Maharashtra in alliance with the Congress and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), report have emerged that a section of the newly-elected MLAs are upset over the party's decision to form a government with the other two.

Seventeen MLAs of Sena, along with senior leader Manohar Joshi, reportedly went to party chief Uddhav Thackeray's  Mumbai residence on Wednesday to convey that they were unhappy with the party's decision to form an alliance with the Congress and NCP, reported News18. However, they did not get an appointment to meet Uddhav.

These reports come amid statements by senior Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut, who claimed on Wednesday that a government led by his party will be in place by next month in Maharashtra.

"We are inching towards the government formation. The picture will become clear in the next two days and a popular government led by the Shiv Sena will be in place by December," he told PTI.

Asked about the meeting between the NCP and the Congress scheduled on Wednesday, Raut said there will be a "full stop to it", implying that the two parties have almost completed their discussions on the government formation in the state.

NCP leader Nawab Malik on Tuesday had said that a meeting between NCP and Congress was postponed to 5 pm on Wednesday. The two sides have deputed leaders for holding talks on a possible alliance, he said.

Deliberations over Maharashtra government formation have been ongoing for at least a month now. Results for Maharashtra Assembly elections were announced on 24 October.

Hinting that a a major development will unfold during the 22 November meeting of Shiv Sena leaders and MLAs in Mumbai, party leader Abdul Sattar said, "All (party) MLAs have been called for a meeting on 22 November (in Mumbai). We have been asked to bring our Id cards and clothes for five days. I think we will have to stay at a place for two-three days, then the next step will be decided."

"Uddhav Thackerayji will be the chief minister of Maharashtra for sure," ANI reported him as saying.

The Congress and NCP have continued to hold a cautious approach towards forming an alliance with the Shiv Sena, whose Hindutva ideology stands in stark contrast towards Congress' secularism. After meeting Congress interim president Sonia Gandhi in Dehli on Wednesday, NCP chief Sharad Pawar said said if the NCP-Congress have to take a view on government formation, they have to first discuss it between themselves and with smaller allies.

Following this, a meeting was scheduled between the senior Congress leaders Mallikarjun Kharge, Ahmed Patel and the party's general secretary KC Venugopal and NCP leaders Praful Patel, Sunil Tatkare, Ajit Pawar, Jayant on Tuesday in Delhi to to explore the possibility of an alliance with the Shiv Sena in the state. However, the meeting was cancelled due to pre-occupation of Congress leaders with Indira Gandhi's birth anniversary events, Malik said.

Last week, after holding hectic parleys in the state, the Congress and NCP had finalised a draft common minimum programme, which they had shared with the Shiv Sena on 14 November, during the first meeting between the three parties after the Assembly results were declared on 24 October. .

In the 21 October Maharashtra Assembly polls, the BJP-Sena alliance secured a comfortable majority by winning 105 and 56 seats respectively in the 288-member Assembly. The Congress and the NCP, pre-poll allies, won 44 and 54 seats respectively.

However, failing to evolve a consensus over the chief minister's post, the two saffron parties parted ways, with the Sena exploring the possibility of tying up with the Congress-NCP. President's rule had been imposed in the state on 12 November after the no single party or combine staked claim to form the new government.

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Updated Date: Nov 23, 2019 21:52:18 IST


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