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Shinde’s government will continue in Maharashtra even after the decision of the Supreme Court

The Constitution Bench of the Supreme Court on Thursday gave its verdict in the case of Uddhav Thackeray and Eknath Shinde in Maharashtra. The court said that the matter would be referred to a larger bench. The CJI said that the question raised in the Nabam Rebia case should be referred to a larger bench. Because it needs more explanation. Along with this, the court has said that the decision regarding the MLAs will be taken by the Speaker.
The Supreme Court said that the speaker was aware of the formation of two factions but the speaker did not investigate the actual whip. At the same time, the Supreme Court said that the interference of the Governor in the internal dispute of the party is not appropriate. Uddhav Thackeray did not face the floor test and the MLAs showed no desire to walk away from the MVA. All this should have been done on the basis of the rules of majority test.
Regarding Uddhav, the Supreme Court said that if he had not resigned, he could have got relief. Also, the Governor should not get involved in the party dispute and the decision of the Governor was not according to the law. Majority test cannot be done in the internal party dispute.
In June 2022 in Maharashtra, the Mahavikas Aghadi government led by Uddhav Thackeray falls after Eknath Shinde’s coup. After this, Eknath Shinde formed the government with the support of rebel MLAs and BJP. Now after 11 months, the Supreme Court has decided to refer the matter to a larger bench. That is, this matter has been postponed for the time being.

What is the matter of Maharashtra?

In June last year, Eknath Shinde along with 15 Shiv Sena MLAs rebelled against Uddhav Thackeray. 16 Shiv Sena MLAs, including Shinde, first went to Surat and then stayed in Guwahati. At that time, Uddhav Shinde came back and proposed to sit and talk but Shinde did not accept it and formed the government with BJP. The Governor administered the oath recognizing the Shinde-BJP coalition government.

The Thackeray faction had filed a petition in the Supreme Court to disqualify Eknath Shinde and his 15 MLAs. When the matter reached the Supreme Court, it was transferred to the Constitution Bench. The bench comprises Chief Justice DY Chandrachud, Justice MR Shah, Justice Krishna Murari, Justice Hima Kohli and Justice PS Narasimha.

The Constitution Bench of the Supreme Court heard the arguments of both the parties on 17 February. From February 21, the court heard the case for 9 consecutive days. On March 16, after the arguments of all the parties were completed, the Supreme Court had reserved its decision and will now pronounce the verdict in this matter on Thursday.

What will be the political situation in Maharashtra if the court disqualifies Shinde and his MLAs and if it does not disqualify the MLAs? In such a situation, everyone’s eyes are fixed on the decision of the Supreme Court. The figures of the Maharashtra Legislative Assembly also have to be understood and what will be the effect of the court’s decision?

There are a total of 288 seats in the Maharashtra Legislative Assembly. In which it is necessary to touch the magic figure of 145 for the majority. The Fadnavis-Shinde government currently has the support of 162 MLAs while the Maha Vikas Aghadi has 121 MLAs. Apart from this, there are 5 more MLAs.

What were the election results in 2019?

In the Maharashtra assembly elections held in the year 2019, out of 288 seats, BJP got maximum 105 seats. After which Shiv Sena (undivided) got 56 seats. NCP got 53 seats and Congress got 44 seats. Bahujan Vikas Aghadi got three seats, Samajwadi Party two, Prahar Janshakti Party got two seats. PWPI got eight seats and one independent.

When did Uddhav Thackeray form the government?

Following the 2019 election results, the Shiv Sena’s claim for the chief minister’s post broke with the BJP and Uddhav Thackeray formed a government with its ideological rivals, the Congress and the NCP, supported by the SP. However, two and a half years later in June 2022, Shinde rebelled with 15 Shiv Sena MLAs and later joined the party’s 25 MLAs. In this way, 40 MLAs along with Shinde joined hands with BJP and Shinde became the Chief Minister.

162 support for Shinde-Fadnavis?

The parties included in the NDA have a total of 288 members in the Maharashtra Legislative Assembly. If we look at the political equations and the position of the party, then the number of MLAs of the parties of the NDA alliance is 162, which is as follows.

1. BJP – 105

2. Shiv Sena (Shinde Group) – 40

3. Prakhar Janshakti Party – 2

4. Other parties – 3

5. Independent 12

MVA has 121 MLAs

On the other hand, if we talk about the opposition alliance Mahavikas Aghadi (MVA), then they have a total of 121 MLAs, out of which the maximum number of MLAs (53) are from NCP. Following are the parties in the MVA alliance and their number of MLAs

1. NCP-53

2. Congress – 45

3. Shiv Sena (Uddhav faction) – 17

4. SP-2

5. Other parties – 4

No support of five MLAs

Also, 5 MLAs are not part of any alliance. It has three MLAs from Bahujan Vikas Aghadi and 2 MLAs from AIMIM who are neither part of MVA alliance nor NDA alliance.

What will happen after the court’s decision?

If the Supreme Court verdict goes in favor of Eknath Shinde, it will be a big political victory. With this, he will become a long innings player in the state. On the other hand, if the Supreme Court disqualifies 16 MLAs of the Shinde group today, then the political crisis will deepen further. In such a situation, Chief Minister Shinde will have to resign as his name is also included in the petition by Uddhav to disqualify the MLAs.

The Shinde-BJP government currently has the support of 162 MLAs, of which the Shiv Sena (Shinde faction) has 40. If 16 MLAs get disqualified from this list then this figure will come down to 26 while Uddhav faction has 17 MLAs. In such a situation, to get the status of a separate party by separating from Uddhav Thackeray, the Shinde faction should have at least 30 MLAs, which it currently does not have. In such a situation, the MLAs of the Shinde faction may have to face the anti-defection law. Will this affect Sindh and the BJP government as well?

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