Minutes after the Supreme Court refused to stay the floor test on June 30 as directed by Governor BS Koshyari, Uddhav Thackeray, in a webcast on Wednesday night announced his resignation from the Chief Minister’s post. He also declared that he will resign as a member of the Maharashtra Legislative Council. Later, he went to Raj Bhavan and handed over his resignation to the Governor.
“I am resigning as CM, as I don’t want a hand in the blood of Shiv Sainiks that may be spilled tomorrow,” said Thackeray, putting up a brave front in the wake of rebellion staged by Shiv Sena legislators, led by Eknath Shinde. He said he will now start sitting again in Shiv Sena Bhavan and revive the party with youths and Sainiks.
“In a democracy, heads are counted to show numbers. I am not interested in that. I don’t want to play these games. Tomorrow, they will say they have brought down Shiv Sena supremo Balasaheb Thackeray’s son,” he said, adding, “I came to power unexpectedly, and I’m exiting in a similar manner.” He said Shiv Sena is one family, and he will not let it be pulled apart. “I am not going anywhere, I will gather all our supporters, we will recoup,” he said.
Thackeray hailed the allies – the NCP and the Congress – for their strong support and cooperation in the last two-and-a-half years but expressed serious displeasure over betrayal by his own party leaders. “I want to thank NCP President Sharad Pawar and Congress President Sonia Gandhi and also state leaders for extending their cooperation in the functioning of the Maha Vikas Aghadi government. It was ironic that besides me, only three other ministers from Shiv Sena, including Subhash Desai, Anil Parab and Aaditya Thackeray were present at today’s cabinet meeting. Rest you know where they have gone,” he said.
“The Supreme Court has given the verdict on the floor test. I want to thank the Governor who upheld democracy by asking us to hold a floor test in 24 hours after a delegation met them.” However, he hoped the Governor should have cleared the file pertaining to the nomination of 12 in the state council which has been pending for a long time.
“Bad luck has struck our government,” Thackeray said. He expressed his disappointment with the Shinde faction, saying that he gave the rebel MLAs all that they wanted.
Thackeray referred to his appeal to the rebel MLAs to return to Mumbai and hold talks to find a way, He said, “Who are you angry at? Me, Congress or NCP? Rather than going to Surat and speaking up you should have come to me at Matoshree. I still respect your feelings,” he said, adding that those whom he promoted and built up are the ones who betrayed him.