Maharashtra: Congress leader Sangram Thopte front-runner for post of Assembly speaker
Maharashtra: Congress leader Sangram Thopte front-runner for post of Assembly speaker

The suspense pertaining to the elections to the post of Maharashtra Legislative Assembly Speaker is finally over. The Maha Vikas Aghadi--a tripartite alliance of Shiv Sena, Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) and Congress--has decided to hold the election on July 6 during the two-day monsoon session of the state legislature slated for July 5 and July 6.

Maharashtra Revenue Minister Balasaheb Thorat on Thursday said the MVA is in agreement to convene Maharashtra Assembly Speaker's election in the two-day (on 5th and 6th July) monsoon session. This was finalised at the meeting chaired by Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray and attended by Deputy CM Ajit Pawar, Water Resources Minister Jayant Patil, Revenue Minister Balasaheb Thorat and Legislative Affairs Minister Anil Parab.

MVA sources told news agency ANI that the Congress party will retain the Assembly speaker’s post, which has been lying vacant since Nana Patole resigned and took over as the Maharashtra Pradesh Congress Committee president.

Meanwhile, Congress legislator Sangram Thopte from the Bhor Assembly constituency is the front-runner for the post of Assembly speaker, ANI quoted MVA sources as saying.

Tribal Development Minister KC Padvi and senior Congress leader Prithiviraj Chavan are also considered to be the front-runners for the post of Assembly speaker.

Besides, the MVA is confident to win the Speaker’s post, as the ruling partners claim the support of at least 170 legislators, which exceeds the halfway mark of 144 in the 288-member Maharashtra Legislative Assembly. The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has 106 legislators and they claim to have the support of more than 10 independents and other parties.

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