“Ask Uddhav-ji,” Shiv Sena MLA from Thane, Pratap Baburao Sarnaik said when asked how Uddhav Thackeray reacted when party MLAs demanded the Sena chief helm Maharashtra as the state’s next chief minister.
Refusing to divulge what happened during Sena president Uddhav Thackeray’s meeting with his party’s legislators Sarnaik said, “How can we say anything? He himself has not said anything on the issue (of becoming Maharashtra CM).” Sarnaik reiterated the Sena stand that the decision made by Thackeray will be followed by all the elected lawmakers from the party.
As the move for the new government formation in Maharashtra gathers pace, Thackeray met his party’s legislators in Mumbai hours ahead of the tripartite meeting between Shiv Sena, NCP and Congress later this evening in Mumbai.
In a related development, soon after this meeting, the Shiv Sena has moved all its MLAs to Hotel Lalit near Mumbai airport where they are likely to stay put till there is clarity on the next political dispensation in the state.
Interestingly, while all the Shiv Sena MLAs had stayed at The Retreat in suburban Mumbai during hectic negotiations between the Shiv Sena, NCP and Congress soon after President’s rule was imposed in the state by governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari on November 12, this time around they have been sent to The Lalit that is closer to the airport fuelling more speculation about them being moved to Jaipur.
Sarnaik confirmed that the Sena MLAs were at the Lalit and will stay there till the next government is formed. He denied speculation that Shiv Sena MLas would be taken to Jaipur in Rajasthan, ruled by Congress chief minister Ashok Gehlot, to prevent poaching by the BJP. “We are not going anywhere,” said Sarnaik, who is accompanying the MLAs along with Lok Sabha MP from Mumbai South, Arvind Sawant.