Uddhav Thackeray crosses election barrier; Maharashtra CM and eight others elected unopposed to state Legislative Council

Maharashtra chief minister Uddhav Thackeray and eight other candidates belonging to the ruling and opposition parties were declared elected unopposed to the state Legislative Council on Thursday

Press Trust of India May 14, 2020 21:14:49 IST
Uddhav Thackeray crosses election barrier; Maharashtra CM and eight others elected unopposed to state Legislative Council

Mumbai: Maharashtra chief minister Uddhav Thackeray and eight other candidates belonging to the ruling and opposition parties were declared elected unopposed to the state Legislative Council on Thursday.

The biennial elections for the nine seats of the Council, which fell vacant on 24 April, were scheduled to be held next Thursday.

Uddhav Thackeray crosses election barrier Maharashtra CM and eight others elected unopposed to state Legislative Council

File image of Uddhav Thackeray. PTI

The election process was initiated on 4 May to fill in vacancies for nine seats, which fell vacant after the completion of the term of nine members.

The election process was initially postponed in view of the coronavirus pandemic.

However, state Governor BS Koshyari had recently written to the Election Commission of India (ECI), requesting it to hold the polls to enable Thackeray to complete the constitutional provision of getting elected to the legislature within six months of becoming chief minister.

As many as 14 candidates had filed their nomination papers for the nine seats. Of them, the nomination of one candidate was rejected during the scrutiny of papers, while BJP's Ajit Gopchade and Sandeep Lele, NCP's Kiran Pawaskar and Shivajirao Garje withdrew from the race on 12 May.

The nine candidates left in the fray were Shiv Sena's Uddhav Thackeray and Neelam Gorhe, NCP's Shashikant Shinde, Amol Mitkari, Congress' Rajesh Rathod, and four candidates of the opposition BJP — Ranjitsinh Mohite Patil, Gopichand Padalkar, Pravin Datke and Ramesh Karad.

"They were declared elected unopposed on Thursday after the deadline for withdrawal of papers ended at 3 pm," an official said.

The state cabinet had initially recommended that Thackeray be nominated by the governor to the Council from his quota. Despite sending two recommendations, the governor did not nominate Thackeray to the Upper House of the legislature and was criticised by the ruling Maharashtra Vikas Aghadi (MVA) constituents.

Thackeray had even spoken to Prime Minister Narendra Modi to seek his intervention in the matter.

Thackeray was sworn in as chief minister on 28 November, 2019. As per the rule, the chief minister has to get elected as legislator within six months.

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