INDIA. Mumbai: The hearing of the petitions related to the rebellion of Shiv Sena MLAs, which led to changes in the Maharashtra Government and Assembly, is scheduled before the bench comprising Chief Justice of India NV Ramana, Justice Krishna Murari, and Justice Hima Kohli on Wednesday.
The saffron party received another blow when Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla recognised Rahul Shewale (from the Eknath Shinde breakaway faction) as the Shiv Sena group leader, despite the party appointing Thane MP Rajan Vichare as the leader.
Birla recognised Rahul Shewale as the floor leader of the Shiv Sena in the Lok Sabha, based on a letter given by 12 MPs (out of a total of 19 MPs) belonging to the Eknath Shinde-led rebel group on Tuesday.
The Shiv Sena Spokesman Sanjay Raut, MP, in the letters to the Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi and Birla on July 07, had communicated that Rajan Vichare had been appointed as a Chief Whip replacing Bhavana Gawali (MP from Yavatmal-Washim) (who has joined the rebel group).
The MPs who have joined the rebel Shinde camp are Dhairyasheel Mane (Hatkanangale, Kolhapur), Sanjay Mandalik (Kolhapur), Bhavana Gawali (Yavatmal-Washim), Hemant Patil (Hingoli), Hemant Godse (Nashik), Krupal Tumane (Ramtek (SC), Nagpur), Srikant Eknath Shinde (Kalyan), Rahul Shewale (Mumbai South Central), Srirang Barne( Maval, Pune), Rajendra Gavit (Palghar ST), Pratap Jadhav (Buldhana), Sadashiv Lokhande (Shirdi (SC) Ahmednagar).
Shinde visited New Delhi on Tuesday, met top BJP leaders, and consulted with them. Before that, he held a virtual meeting with these MPs.
The pending petitions filed by the Thackeray camp and rebel Shinde faction include WP (C) No. 468 of 2022, WP (C) No. 469 of 2022, WP(C) No. 470 of 2022 (petitioner), and WP (C) No. 479 of 2022.
A petition preferred by rebel Shiv Sena leader Eknath Shinde (now the Chief Minister) and the petition filed by Bharat Gogawale and 14 other Shiv Sena MLAs challenging the disqualification proceedings initiated by the then Deputy Speaker Narhari Zirwal and seeking to restrain the Deputy Speaker from taking any action in the disqualification petition until the resolution for removal Zirwal is decided.
The deadline for the dissident MLAs to submit written responses to the Deputy Speaker’s disqualification notice was extended by the division bench of Justices Surya Kant and JB Pardiwala on June 27 to July 12.
Shiv Sena Chief Whip Sunil Prabhu, a member of the Uddhav Thackeray group, has filed a second appeal to contest the Maharashtra Governor’s order to the Chief Minister to demonstrate the majority of the Maharashtra Vikas Aghadi (MVA) Government.
On June 29, the Supreme Court refused to stall the floor test. After the Court’s order, Uddhav Thackeray announced his resignation as the Chief Minister, and Eknath Shinde was later sworn in as the CM.
Sunil Prabhu filed the petition, the whip appointed by the Uddhav Thackeray-led group, challenging the action of the newly elected Maharashtra Assembly Speaker Rahul Narvekar recognising the whip nominated by the Eknath Shinde group as the Chief Whip of Shiv Sena.
Subhash Desai, a former minister and general secretary of the Shiv Sena (of the Uddhav group), has filed yet another petition in opposition to the Maharashtra Governor’s choice to nominate Eknath Shinde as the state’s chief minister.
The petition also challenges the further proceedings of the State’s Legislative Assembly held on July 3 and July 4 for the election of the new Speaker and the vote of confidence of Shinde government as ‘illegal’.
The disqualification proceedings against the MLAs—started by both the Shinde and Thackeray groups against MLAs of the competing groupings—were put on hold last week after the CJI instructed the Speaker to do so till further orders.
It may be recalled that the rebel MLAs were taken to Surat (Gujarat) on June 20. Then they were moved to Guwahati (Assam) on June 22. They were shifted to Goa on June 30. Uddhav Thackeray resigned on June 29 after the Supreme Court refused to stay the floor test scheduled on June 30. Shinde and Devendra Fadnavis (BJP) were eventually sworn in as the CM and DCM, respectively.