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Maharashtra government formation LIVE: Governor invites Shiv Sena to stake claim to form next government

Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeary. (File Photo. Shiv Sena Twitter). Maharashtra Governor has invited the Shiv Sena to stake claim to form the next government.

Maharashtra government formation latest update: Maharashtra Governor BS Koshyari on Sunday evening asked the Shiv Sena to indicate the willingness and ability of the party to form the next government in the state. The Shiv Sena is the second-largest party in the new 288-member Legislative Assembly with 56 MLAs. The developments came barely hours after the BJP which emerged as the single largest party with 105 seats conceded that it was not in a position to form the government despite its pre-poll alliance having a clear public mandate. Koshyari called upon Shiv Sena leader Eknath Shinde to convey his stand in the matter to him. Later, Shiv Sena leaders Milind Narvekar and Anil Desai visited party chief Uddhav Thackeray at Matoshree to discuss the possibility of the government formation. Though the BJP and Shiv Sena alliance gained the majority in the last month’s elections, the alliance couldn’t form the government because of the latter’s demand for a 50-50 power-sharing formula including for the CM’s post. Though a specific time-frame is not mentioned in the Raj Bhavan communique for the Shiv Sena to stake its claim to form the government, reports claim that the party may have barely 24 hours to stake its claim along with the requisite number of supporting MLAs before the Governor.

Meanwhile, in the wake of the Governor’s invite to the Shiv Sena, a fresh round of informal negotiations have started between the Shiv Sena, NCP and Congress. The NCP has 54 MLAs while the Congress has 44. If the two parties decide to support the Shiv Sena, the saffron party will be in a comfortable position to form the next government. However, both the NCP and Congress have made it clear that their support will depend on the Shiv Sena announcing that its alliance with the BJP has broken and then withdraws its sole nominee in the Union Cabinet, Heavy Industry Minister Arvind Sawant.

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Source: Financial Express