How Maharashtra Drama Unfolded To Make Devendra Fadnavis CM Again
As Uddhav Thackeray has resigned, Devendra Fadnavis is all set to be CM of Maharashtra again. Here's a tour of how he managed to do this.
It all started with Rajya Sabha and MLC elections: While the post-poll alliance of Shiv Sena, NCP and Congress was always vulnerable, fissures began to appear during these elections.
BJP managed to send all its three candidates to Rajya Sabha while handing a defeat to Shiv Sena candidate amid allegations of cross-voting.
A week after, BJP bagged five out of the 10 seats in the MLC elections, while it had enough numbers to win four seats only.
BJP got 26 votes from outside the party. Not only did independents vote for BJP’s candidate, but some of the MLAs and ministers from Shiv Sena also appeared to have shifted their votes to the party in opposition.
Eknath Shinde comes into action: Soon after the MLC elections, Shinde went missing in action and so did 10-12 Shiv Sena MLAs considered close to him.
Initially, they lodged in a hotel in Surat and then moved to Guwahati. More and more Shiv Sena MLAs started joining him thereafter.
Shinde waited for enough MLAs to arrive to beat the anti-defection law.
With around 40 MLAs by his side, he finally met Fadnavis in Vadodara.
Role of Supreme Court: Plea of rebel MLAs against disqualification was heard on Monday where they were granted time till 12 July to respond to Deputy Speaker's notice.
Legal experts claimed that the SC order paved way for the floor test. Hence, Fadnavis met the governor on the same day seeking a floor test.
Governor ordered a floor test on 30 June after which Thackeray moved to the SC asking for a stay.
The SC, however, ordered a floor test as per Governor's order.
Fadnavis's long game: Fadnavis and Shinde are known to have a years-long friendship cutting across party lines. Shinde was on the BJP radar before the 2019 Assembly elections.
Fadnavis has come out on top numerous times in the past too in contests of realpolitik. He has been active as a leader of the opposition.
He has been seen to be vocal and straightforward in communication on Hindutva issues, unlike the Shiv Sena, which continues to lose steam on that front.
Fadnavis has also been steadfast in taking the governance issues, and allegations of corruption among the top leaders of the MVA government, including Anil Deshmukh and Nawab Malik, closer to their logical conclusions.
In Goa elections held in 2022, Fadnavis, who was BJP’s Goa election in-charge, led the talks for forging an alliance between the BJP and Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party (MGP), TMC’s pre-poll alliance partner, to form the government in the state.
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