12 Shiv Sena MPs set to form separate group in Lok Sabha and meet Speaker

The move comes weeks after the Uddhav Thackeray-led Shiv Sena witnessed a vertical split with 40 of the MLAs joining the faction headed by Chief Minister Eknath Shinde.
Maharashtra CM Eknath Shinde. (Photo | PTI)
Maharashtra CM Eknath Shinde. (Photo | PTI)

MUMBAI: A group of 12 Shiv Sena MPs on Monday attended the "national executive" of the party called by the Chief Minister Eknath Shinde faction and decided to form a separate group in Lok Sabha, a party MP said.

The national executive called by the rebel group ahead of the Supreme Court hearing on July 20, also appointed Shinde as the 'chief leader' of the party, he said.

The MP also claimed that a new national committee has been appointed replacing the one appointed by Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray.

However, the Shinde faction spokesperson Deepak Kesarkar has denied the formation of any national committee replacing the existing one appointed by Thackeray.

The purported move to form a separate group of 12 Shiv Sena MPs comes weeks after a rebellion of 40 MLAs led by Shinde caused the collapse of the Uddhav Thackeray-led government.

"We attended an online meeting of the party national executive held by Chief Minister Eknath Shinde today. We have decided to form a separate group under the leadership of Rahul Shewale (an MP from Mumbai). He will be our group leader," the Sena MP said.

He said Shiv Sena MPs Vinayak Raut, Arvind Sawant, Gajanan Kiritkar, Sanjay Jadhav, Om Raje Nimbalkar, and Rajan Vichare did not attend the virtual meeting called by Shinde while the rest 12 MPs from Maharashtra attended.

The Shiv Sena has 19 MPs in Lok Sabha, including 18 from Maharashtra.

The MP also claimed that Shiv Sena leaders Anandrao Adsul and Ramdas Kadam, who quit their posts, have been "reinstated" as leaders by the rebel faction.

Former MP Shivajirao Adhalrao Patil, and former ministers Gulabrao Patil and Uday Samant have been appointed as deputy leaders of the Shive Sena, the MP claimed.

The Shiv Sena has sought disqualification of some rebel MLAs and the matter is pending before the Supreme Court.

The Supreme Court is scheduled to hear on July 20 a batch of pleas pertaining to the recent happenings in Maharashtra that led to the fall of the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government.

Kesarkar, however, denied the claim of the Shiv Sena MP. "There is no truth that we have formed a separate national committee. We are in favour of the unification of the party again," Kesarkar told reporters. I am a mere spokesperson of the Shinde camp and I can inform you that meetings are taking place every day in Mumbai, he added.

When asked about the Shiv Sena party sacking its veteran leaders like Ramdas Kadam and Anandrao Adsul, he said, "there are some advisers around party chief Uddhav Thackeray who are sinking his ship. They are the ones who are giving him wrong advice".

"Unless there is a political vacuum, no existing political party can grow. By weakening Shiv Sena, the space is being created by other parties for themselves," he said.

Although Kesarkar did not elaborate on which parties would benefit from weakening the Shiv Sena, he had previously blamed the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) for chipping away at the Sena base.

Related Stories

No stories found.

The New Indian Express