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Maharashtra: Shiv Sena govt backed by NCP, Cong soon

With the resignation of Sawant from the Modi cabinet, Shiv Sena's decades old alliance with the BJP has formally ended

Monday November 11, 2019 10:28 AM, ummid.com with inputs from IANS

Shiv Sena Government in Maharashtra

[Sena Chief Uddhav Thackeray with his son Aaditya Thackeray and other members of his family in a file photo. (Image: Twitter/@AUThackeray)]

Mumbai: Arvind Sawant, the lone Shiv Sena minister in Modi cabinet, has resigned soon after the Maharashtra Governor invited the party to form a government in the state.

The Congress and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) had earlier said they could provide an alternative if and if the Shiv Sena pulls out of the NDA and snaps all its ties with the BJP.

With the resignation of Sawant from the Modi cabinet, Shiv Sena's decades old alliance with the BJP has formally ended.

Maharashtra Governor B.S. Koshyari invited Shiv Sena, the second largest party in the state assembly, to form a government after BJP expressed its inability to form one as it lacked the needed support.

"If the Shiv Sena is in a position to form the government with the help of the Congress-Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), we offer them our best wishes," BJP State President Chandrakant Patil said in a brief interaction with the media on the Raj Bhavan lawns Sunday.

Following the Governor's invitation, Shiv Sena Chief Uddhav Thackeray had a phone call with NCP Chief Sharad Pawar. According to the sources, the conversation between the two focused on government formation.

On the other hand, Congress in-charge in Maharashtra Mallikarjun Kharge on Sunday held a meeting with the party's 44 MLAs, who are lodged in a Jaipur resort, to find out their views on the state's current political situation.

The meeting was also attended by state Congress Chief Balasahab Thorat and former chief ministers Ashok Chavan and Prithviraj Chavan. Kharge will now meet the Congress high command in Delhi to apprise it of the feedback.

Sources said most MLAs are not averse to the Congress offering conditional support to a Shiv Sena-led government in the state.

Meanwhile, NCP leader Sharad Pawar is holding the party's core committee meeting in Mumbai. The NCP meeting will finalise the common agenda and other details of the new government.

The newly elected 288-member Maharashtra Assembly is a hung house where -- the BJP has 105 MLAs, the Shiv Sena 56, the NCP 54 and the Congress 44.

The Shiv Sena has time till 07:30 pm Monday to respond to the governor's invitation.

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