Eknath Shinde-led rebels name their group ‘Shiv Sena Balasaheb’
Maharashtra crisis: Eknath Shinde and 38 other rebel MLAs have been camping in a five-star hotel in BJP-ruled Assam.
The rebel MLAs led by Eknath Shinde on Saturday named their group as ‘Shiv Sena Balasaheb’, this amid the Uddhav Thackeray-led Shiv Sena presses for their disqualification from the assembly.
“Our group will be called Shiv Sena Balasaheb. We will not merge with any party,” rebel Shiv Sena MLA Deepak Kesarkar said. Eknath Shinde group's decision comes amid the executive meeting of the Uddhav Thackeray-led Shiv Sena. The Maha Vikas Aghadi government continues to put up a brave front even as 38 rebel MLAs are camping in Guwahati.
On Friday, the rebel camp had written a letter to acting speaker Narhari Zirwal saying that Eknath Shinde will be the elected leader in the assembly. Two independent lawmakers backing them also issued a notice to move no-confidence motion against Zirwal, who accepted a Sena proposal to disqualify 16 rebel MLAs.
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The Shiv Sena has been in a combative mode with Uddhav Thackeray in his Friday address calling the rebels as ‘backstabbers’. There have been incidents of Shiv Sainiks vandalising the offices of rebel legislators.
The Shiv Sainiks vandalised the office of rebel MLA Tanaji Sawant in Pune. The Pune Police has issued an alert and asked all police stations to ensure security at offices related to Shiv Sena leaders in the city.
The Mumbai Police has also issued a high alert and asks all Police Stations to ensure security at all political offices in the city. It has been directed that officer-level Police personnel shall visit every political office to ensure their safety. On Friday, the Shiv Sainiks had vandalised the hoardings of rebel MLAs Mangesh Kudalkar and Dilip Lande in Mumbai.
Earlier in the day, Eknath Shinde in a letter to chief minister Uddhav Thackeray and home minister Dilip Walse Patil had alleged that the security cover to the family members of the rebel MLAs was withdrawn, as an ‘act of revenge’. However, the charge was vehemently denied by the ruling Aghadi government.