Mumbai : Revenue Minister Eknath Khadse is not going to go down without a fight. Acutely aware of the forces working against him within the party and outside, the BJP leader is showcasing his strength inside and outside the government.
On Tuesday, he had skipped a state Cabinet meeting presided over by the chief minister to attend a religious function in his home town in Jalgaon district. Observers saw in this a conscious decision to showcase his local strength.
On Wednesday, he was keen to underscore the support that he enjoys within the party by scaling up his interface with MLAs from Jalgaon district. Some of them were even asked to convey to the senior party leadership that they were behind Khadse. The meeting had the desired effect: by evening the media buzz was that some 17 corporators had threatened to resign if the party takes any action against the minister.
Interestingly, the Chief Minister has not still made any statement regarding the recent allegations against Khadse. Sources said that the longer the CM takes to make up his mind, the greater will be the collateral damage. Already, he is being rebuked for not being able to muster the political courage to act against a senior minister on an issue of alleged corruption.
“The Central leadership of the BJP has made it clear that it is the CM who will have to decide on this issue and hence everyone is waiting for some reaction from him,” the source added.