Maharashtra: No speaker’s election on July 6

Mumbai: It’s now official. The much-debated election to the Maharashtra Legislative Assembly will not take place during the two-day monsoon session which will be concluded on July 6. Even though the Congress was insisting that the election should take place to fill up the post which is lying vacant after Nana Patole resigned to take over as the state unit chief. However, Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray was not eager to conduct an election due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

The legislature secretariat has not announced the poll schedule on Monday and, therefore, the Maha Vikas Aghadi government sources admitted that the election won’t take place on Tuesday as it will be held in the winter session.

Thackeray in his response to Governor BS Koshyari on July 2 had said the government was trying to hold the election for the legislative assembly speaker's post at the earliest. "There is no violation of constitutional provision. There is no time-frame to hold the speaker's election," he added.

"It is better if each and every MLA can participate in the election process. There is no point in doing things in haste. As per the World Health Organisation (WHO) and the union health ministry guidelines, RT-PCR test done within 72 hours is held valid. So, it is not correct to declare a date in advance for holding the speaker's election," the CM said in the letter.

Thackeray said deputy speaker Narhari Zirwal is officiating as the speaker and he had overseen the proceedings during the budget session held earlier this year.

Meanwhile, Shiv Sena MLA Pratap Sarnaik, who recently urged Thackeray to patch up with estranged ally BJP in the wake of harassment by central investigating agencies, broke his silence saying that he was not Vijay Mallya or Nirav Modi to run away from the country in the wake of ED probe in connection with the money laundering case. He said he was no accessible as he had undergone heart surgery and also because of family issue.

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