Mumbai: Tension has started mounting within the two factions of the Shiv Sena as the Supreme Court is scheduled to hear the issue of disqualification of the defector MLAs from February 14 onwards.
The fate of Chief Minister Eknath Shinde, who leads Balasahebanchi Shiv Sena, also revolves around the apex court's verdict. Uddhav Thackeray, who leads the Shiv Sena (UBT), targeted the Shinde group at a presser held at his residence 'Matoshree' in Bandra East, without mentioning the CM by name. He said two legal matters were now pending; one before the SC and the other before the Election Commission of India (ECI).
UT: We are real Shiv Sena
He said the legislative wing of any party cannot be co-terminus with the party organisation. “If the legislative wing was above the party then any businessman can buy the elected representatives and become Chief Minister or Prime Minister,” he asserted. Averring that his party is the real Shiv Sena, Thackeray said his group has submitted the membership forms of several lakh of Shiv Sainiks to the ECI along with affidavits signed by several office-bearers. “A party is the one you see on the streets,” he remarked, while denying recognition to the Shinde camp.
“My party's foundation is the support and sacrifice of several lakh Shiv Sainiks, and not a few MLAs,” he underlined. He observed that his party has been holding regular elections and conducting itself as per its Constitution, while the rival group had totally violated the rules. Accompanied by senior leaders Arvind Sawant, Subhash Desai and Anil Desai, Thackeray hoped that the matters before the SC and the ECI will be decided entirely on merit.
The BJP, which had masterminded the Shinde rebellion, is closely watching the developments within the two Sena factions. The BJP had formed the government in Maharashtra with the support of the group led by Eknath Shinde. If the disqualification issue is decided against the Shinde faction then it will majorly impact the ruling alliance.
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