Shiv Sena leader Eknath Shinde took a veiled dig at Maharashtra CM Uddhav Thackeray, asserting that the rebels are carrying forward the ideology of Balasaheb Thackeray. Addressing the media for the first time after revolting against the Shiv Sena leadership in the early hours of Wednesday, Shinde clarified that the rebel MLAs were still part of the Shiv Sena. However, he confirmed that he would not compromise with Hindutva – a sign that he may part ways with the party if he does not leave the alliance with the NCP and Congress.
Speaking at the Surat airport before departing for Guwahati, Maharashtra minister Eknath Shinde remarked, “We are Balasaheb’s Shiv Sainiks. We have not left Shiv Sena and we will not leave Shiv Sena. But we are based on Balasaheb’s ideology. Going to do politics.”
He further said, “Today we are carrying forward the ideology of Balasaheb. And you all know that Balasaheb has given the ideology of Hindutva to this country. We will not compromise with Hindutva.” After arriving at the popular Gopinath Bordoloi International Airport in Guwahati, Shinde said, “40 Shiv Sena MLAs are present here. We want to carry forward Balasaheb Thackeray’s Hindutva and his stand. I don’t want to comment or criticize anyone.” As per the anti-defection law, at least 37 Shiv Sena MLAs are required to revolt to avoid the possibility of disqualification.
Maharashtra political crisis
In a major political development on Tuesday, senior Shiv Sena leader Eknath Shinde and several other party MLAs went incommunicado and went to Le Meridien Hotel in Surat. At present, Shinde holds the portfolios of Urban Development and PWD (Public Undertakings) in the Uddhav Thackeray-led government in Maharashtra. Sources indicated that these leaders are upset with the Shiv Sena and are in touch with the BJP. This assumes significance in view of the cross-voting of several Shiv Sena MLAs for the BJP in the recently concluded MLC elections.
Congress leader spat on police personnel while being detained amid protests
Credit: bharat.republicworld.com /