Despite rebel MLAs ruling out the possibility of returning to the party fold and BJP’s defeating silence over the present political crisis, Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, who is also the Shiv Sena President, on Tuesday indicated that he will not resign but is prepared to face the floor test if asked by the Governor. Thackeray, who has left the CM’s official residence Varsha and shifted to family house Matoshree at Bandra, on Tuesday virtually chaired the cabinet meeting and hinted that he is still at command and not deterred by rebellion staged by 39 MLAs led by Eknath Shinde against him. Thackeray called the cabinet meeting again on Wednesday.
A senior MVA minister told Free Press Journal, ‘’Thackeray, who has recovered from COVID 19, is determined to fight and weather the present political crisis especially after his meetings with the Shiv Sena leaders and also with NCP and Congress leaders. As per his strategy, he will participate in the debate during the floor test and expose BJP and rebel MLAs for their move to destabilise the government. It will be AB Vajpayee moment for the CM who may wait till the outcome of the floor test or after making speech will announce that he is heading for Raj Bhavan to hand over his resignation.’’ The minister said that Shiv Sena, NCP and Congress and other allies will strongly remain with CM during the present situation.
Thackeray also reportedly pulled up the administration for spreading rumours that the days of the Maha Vikas Aghadi government are numbered. CM also expressed serious displeasure over some of the secretaries going on leave citing that they did not want to be signatories on the files at a time when there is political crisis in the state especially after the coup by Shiv Sena legislators. ‘’CM told the chief secretary and other secretaries that they should not worry about the government’s survival but continue to do their work,’’ said a senior minister after today’s cabinet meeting.
According to another minister, the cabinet on Wednesday is expected to give its approval to rename Aurangabad as Sambhajinagar in a bid to checkmate BJP ahead of the upcoming civic body election there. The renaming has been a contentious issue that surfaces ahead of every election. Recently, the Aurangabad district guardian minister and Industry Minister Subhash Desai urged the union civil aviation minister Jyotiraditya Scindia to take an early decision to name Aurangabad airport after leading warrior Chhatrapati Sambhaji.