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HomeNewsAssam BJP minister meets rebel Shiv Sena MLAs at Guwahati hotel

Assam BJP minister meets rebel Shiv Sena MLAs at Guwahati hotel

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Assam Minister Ashok Singhal met with dissident Shiv Sena leader Eknath Shinde and other rebel MLAs from Maharashtra at Radisson Blu Hotel in Guwahati on Saturday night, according to reports.

A source close to the development told PTI that the Housing and Urban Affairs of Assam went to the hotel late Saturday night and held discussions with Shinde and the other rebel MLAs.

It is, however, not immediately known what Singhal discussed with the rebel Shiv Sena legislators and Independent MLAs from the western state.

When contacted, Singhal confirmed that he had gone to the hotel, but declined to share details.

However, a close associate of the minister told PTI, ”He went there to meet an MLA whom he knew. He was there for some time and had a cup of tea.” It is significant that the meeting took place just hours after 16 dissident MLAs were sent disqualification notices.

READ| Aditya Thackeray says ‘road to Vidhan Bhavan from airport goes via Worli’; Centre provides Y-Plus security to rebels

The BJP, which formerly had an alliance with the Shiv Sena, has stayed out of the current political crisis in Maharashtra.

Despite sending a party MP and one MLA to meet the legislators at Guwahati’s Lokpriya Gopinath Bordoloi International (LGBI) Airport on June 22, Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said the dissidents travelled to the state on their own.

The Assam Police has taken over the security from the private guards of the hotel and is not allowing anyone to enter the premises.

The Maharashtra political crisis appears to be gradually shifting in favour of rebel Shiv Sena leader Eknath Shinde, with four more party MLAs arriving in Guwahati on Thursday and joining the others who have been camping at a five-star hotel in the city since Wednesday.

READ| Sanjay Raut to Eknath Shinde faction: ‘Don’t use Balasaheb, use your father’s name’

Notably, Eknath Shinde claims the support of 38 Shiv Sena legislators out of the party’s 55 legislators, representing more than two-thirds of the party’s strength in the 288-member Maharashtra Legislative Assembly. It implies they can either leave and form another political party or unite with another party without losing their seats in the state legislature.

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