AGENCIES / MUMBAI
Devendra Fadnavis resigned as Maharashtra Chief Minister on Friday with no sign of a new government and his BJP and its ally Shiv Sena no closer to forming one together.
Mr Fadnavis met with Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari to hand in his resignation hours before the midnight deadline for government formation.
The term of the Maharashtra assembly ends tomorrow.
Addressing the media, Mr Fadnavis delivered his strongest statement against the Shiv Sena since 2014, when he took over as Chief Minister. He also questioned whether the Shiv Sena, which had not spared Prime Minister Narendra Modi from its attacks, was worth continuing an alliance with.
“Given their statements, especially against the PM, we are stunned and hurt. No one from the BJP ever targeted Bal Thackeray (Sena founder) or Uddhav Thackeray. But the way the Sena relentlessly attacked Modi-ji, even our rivals didn’t. We cannot accept it. It seems the Shiv Sena is not interested in continuing the alliance,” Mr Fadnavis said, commenting that the BJP was taken aback by Sena Chief Uddhav Thackeray’s “all options are open” statement.
Meanwhile hectic political activities are on to form a new government in the state. The term of the outgoing assembly expires tomorrow. In the 288 member assembly, BJP has emerged as the single-largest party with 105 seats while its partner Shiv Sena has 56 seats. The two parties are making all out efforts to form the new government. BJP is insisting on Chief Ministership being the single largest party, while Shiv Sena is aspiring for 50:50 arrangement to share the top position in the state.
Yesterday, leaders of the BJP met Governor B S Koshyari but did not stake claim to form the government.
Meanwhile, Shiv Sena has shifted its newly elected MLAs to Rangsharda Hotel in suburban Bandra. Shivsena Chief has called up District Presidents of his party this afternoon to decide next course of action while, Senior BJP leader Nitin Gadkari is likely to talk to Shiv Sena chief Thackeray to end the deadlock between the allies.
The Congress today convened a meeting of its newly-elected MLAs in Mumbai. State Congress president Balasaheb Thorat and other senior leaders attended the meeting.
Earlier, Nationalist Congress Party chief Sharad Pawar had said that NCP-Congress combine has the mandate to sit in opposition. He said that onus is on BJP-Sena combine to form a new government in the state.