Last Updated: August 23, 2022, 15:53 IST
In June, Shiv Sena MLA Eknath Shinde, along with 39 other party MLAs and some independents, rebelled against the party leadership, leading to the collapse of the Uddhav Thackeray-led Maharashtra Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government.
The Shiv Sena had parted ways with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) after the 2019 Maharashtra assembly elections over the issue of sharing the chief ministerial post. The Thackeray-led Shiv Sena had tied-up with the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) and Congress to form the MVA coalition government in the state. Amid high drama, Shinde tied up with the BJP and was sworn in as the Maharashtra Chief Minister on June 30, with BJP leader Devendra Fadnavis as his Deputy. Shinde also claimed that his faction was the “real Sena”, thus starting a battle with Uddhav Thackeray on-ground and in the Supreme Court.
On Tuesday, the Supreme Court directed the Election Commission not to pass any orders on Shinde faction’s plea that it be considered the real Shiv Sena and granted the party’s poll symbol. A bench headed by Chief Justice N V Ramana said that a constitution bench will hear the matter on Thursday, following which the poll body can take up the issue.
A look at the legal fight between Thackeray’s and Shinde’s Sena:
- FLOOR TEST, INVITE TO SHINDE: The Uddhav Thackeray-led faction had approached the SC challenging Maharashtra Governor Bhagat Singh Koshiyari’s decision to invite Eknath Shinde to form the government and also the Speaker’s election and floor test. On June 29, the top court gave a go-ahead to the floor test in the Maharashtra Assembly on June 30. Refusing to stay the Governor’s direction to the then CM Uddhav Thackeray to prove his majority support on the floor of the House on June 30, the bench had issued a notice on Prabhu’s plea against floor test. After the apex court’s order, Thackeray announced his resignation as the Chief Minister and Eknath Shinde was later sworn in as the Chief Minister.
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- REAL SENA: Recently, Thackeray challenged the Shinde group’s plea to the poll panel claiming they are the ‘real Shiv Sena’ and hence should be granted the party symbol. The ECI had asked the both factions to submit documents by August 8 in support of their claims on the election symbol of the political party.“The Election Commission has to decide the issue. Please wait on the issue pending before the EC. Till such time, Election Commission to not take any action,” CJI Ramana said on Tuesday, referring the matter to a five-judge SC bench.
- WHIP: Thackeray had also challenged the newly appointed Assembly Speaker’s action recognising the whip of Chief Minister Eknath Shinde group as the whip of Shiv Sena. The plea said the newly appointed Speaker has no jurisdiction to recognise whips nominated by Shinde as Uddhav Thackeray is still the head of the Shiv Sena. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zzHJIEVHmek” width=”727″ height=”409″ frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen=”allowfullscreen”></iframe></li> <li><strong>SUSPENSION: </strong>Thackeray camp’s Sunil Prabhu had filed a plea seeking suspension from Maharashtra Assembly of Shinde and 15 rebel MLAs against whom disqualification pleas are pending. The Shinde group challenged in the SC the disqualification notices issued by the Deputy Speaker to 16 rebel MLAs as well as the appointment of Ajay Choudhary as Shiv Sena Legislature Party leader. <a href=The SC, meanwhile, had asked Speaker Rahul Narwekar not to take any action on the new disqualification notices issued against the members of the Thackeray-led Shiv Sena.
- RAUT, VICHARE, SHIVALE: The Thackeray faction knocked the doors of the SC, alleging its leaders Vinayak Raut and Rajan Vichare have been “illegally, arbitrarily, and unilaterally” removed by Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla as a leader of the party in House and chief whip, respectively. Moreover, the Uddhav camp challenged the appointment of Rahul Shivale as the Leader of the Shiv Sena in Lok Sabha from July 18 “at the behest of certain delinquent MPs who are guilty of anti-party activities”.
- BMC WARDS: The Supreme Court on Monday ordered a five-week status quo on holding of elections to the Mumbai civic body, Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), in view of the pleas challenging the August 4 ordinance reducing the total number of elected corporators from 236 to 227.
Senior advocate Devadatt Kamat challenged the ordinance on behalf of ex-corporator Suhas C Wadkar, but a bench headed by CJI N V Ramana, who will retire on August 26, said it does not have time to adjudicate the pleas that require considerable hearing.
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The Shinde-Fadnavis government had reversed the MVA government’s decision to increase the number of corporators from 227 to 236 and cancelled the redrawing of ward boundaries finalised by the previous regime.