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What can Uddhav Thackeray do to resolve Maharashtra political crisis?

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What can Uddhav Thackeray do to resolve Maharashtra political crisis?

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Eknath Shinde rebellion: Uddhav Thackeray may resign in the evening, sources said. (File)

Mumbai: Eknath Shinde on Wednesday said that 40 MLAs from Maharashtra, including Shiv Sena leaders and independents, have accompanied him to Assam’s Guwahati. He claimed 10 more Shiv Sena MLAs will join them soon. If the claim proves to be true, the ongoing rebellion will bring the curtains down on the Uddhav Thackeray government.

Eknath Shinde is apparently miffed with the Shiv Sena for forming a government with the ideologically opposite Congress and NCP. “We are committed to Balasaheb Thackeray’s ideology of ‘Hindutva’ and we want to take it forward,” Shinde said.

The MVA government currently has the support of 169 MLAs. The majority mark in the Maharashtra Assembly is 144. If 25 Shiv Sena MLAs decide to vote against Shiv Sena in the trust vote, the government will collapse. The Shiv Sena, which heads the MVA, has 55 MLAs, followed by allies the NCP (53) and the Congress (44). 

The National Democratic Alliance currently has 113 seats in the Maharashtra Assembly. The NDA alliance needs the support of 32 MLAs to form a government. However, if two-third of Shiv Sena MLAs (37) don’t join the revolt, the anti-defection law will kick in and all the rebels will be disqualified from the Assembly. This would mean the Sena could run a minority government until the bypolls are held. 

What are the options with Uddhav Thackeray?

The options with Uddhav Thackeray are limited. Eknath Shinde hasn’t resigned from the Shiv Sena yet. The first option he has is to negotiate with Shinde, who has demanded that the Shiv Sena enters an alliance with the BJP. Currently Sanjay Raut is holding talks with Shinde. “It is difficult for him (Shinde) to leave the party and it will be difficult for us (the Sena) to leave him. Our dialogue is on. We spoke for an hour in the morning. Talks are also on with the MLAs who are with Shinde,” Raut said.

Another option is that the Sena leaders cajole back enough MLAs to ensure implementation of the anti-defection law. With the law kicking in, the Sena will have time to absorb the impact of the blow and prepare for subsequent by-elections.

The third option is that Uddhav Thackeray dissolve the assembly and face elections. Raut on Wednesday afternoon tweeted that the political developments in Maharashtra were heading towards dismissal of the Vidhan Sabha. 

Sources told Zee News that Thackeray may tender his resignation by the evening.

With inputs from PTI

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