Minister Abdul Sattar hasn’t resigned, will meet Uddhav Thackeray: Shiv Sena
The Shiv Sena on Saturday dismissed reports that Abdul Sattar, one of its ministers in the coalition government in Maharashtra has resigned and said he will be meeting party boss and chief minister Uddhav Thackeray on Sunday.
Sattar, an MLA from Sillod in Aurangabad district had switched over from the Congress to the Sena before Assembly elections. People familiar with the developments said he was unhappy with the party leadership for being made minister of state and not given a cabinet berth. He was also said to be angry over the party’s stand to support Congress for the election of Aurangabad district council president.
Earlier Saturday morning, there was speculation about minister’s status after he reportedly resigned at being overlooked for a Cabinet berth.
Sattar himself hasn’t spoken yet, but Sena leader Arjun Khotkar who met him in Aurangabad this morning described reports of the minister’s resignation as rumours.
“Sattar has not tendered his resignation. These are rumours. He will meet Uddhav ji tomorrow afternoon at Matoshree,” Khotkar said. Sattar also had a telephonic talk with senior Sena leader and minister Eknath Shinde.
The political drama involving threats to resign is seen as a setback for the Sena and the Maharashtra Vikas Aghadi government that it heads. The Sena immediately went into damage control mode after Sattar sent feelers through local leaders. Sena insiders said that Sattar could be attempting to land a plum portfolio as the junior minister in the government.
Sattar, who had been a cabinet minister in the earlier Congress-NCP governments, had expected to be given a cabinet berth from the Sena quota this time as well. Many Sena leaders are unhappy after Thackeray gave a cabinet berth and two junior minister posts to three independent MLAs supporting the government.
Senior Sena leader Sanjay Raut said he was not aware of Sattar’s resignation but added, “The Sena does not have many portfolios in its quota and therefore everybody has to adjust. According to me, the chief minister has given respect to Abdul Sattar ji and made him a minister. Those who are upset [over not being made ministers] are not originally from the Sena. They will take time to adjust to the system.”