CM Uddhav Thackeray’s fate appears to hang in balance as Governor noncommittal on his nomination

MUMBAI: Chief minister Uddhav Thackeray’s fate appears to hang in the balance as governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari was apparently noncommittal on his nomination as member of the legislative council during an interaction with state ministers.
A delegation of cabinet members comprising NCP’s Ajit Pawar and Jayant Patil, Shiv Sena’s Eknath Shinde and Anil Parab, and the Congress’ Balasaheb Thorat and Aslam Shaikh knocked at Koshyari’s doors on Tuesday with a revised state cabinet re commendation to appoint Thackeray to the council.
“Koshyari heard our case but was non-committal, so we do not know if our plea will be accepted or otherwise,” a senior cabinet member said. He said in view of the uncertainty over Thackeray’s nomination, the government is considering approaching the Election Commission for early polls to the legislative council.
As per the original plan, elections for nine seats were scheduled to be held on April 24, and Thackeray was to contest the polls. However, the EC postponed the elections in view of crisis, so the CM wanted to be a nominee of the governor as two such nominated posts were lying vacant. The cabinet submitted a proposal for his nomination to the Raj Bhavan on April 9, but it was informed recently that no decision had been taken on the plea on technical grounds. The cabinet then passed a fresh resolution on Monday.
Uddhav Thackeray was sworn in as chief minister on November 27, 2019. Since he was not a member of either House of the state legislature, it is binding on him to become a member within six months, that is, before May 27. “A cabinet meeting has been convened on Wednesday to review the tackling of coronavirus. We may pass a resolution urging the EC to hold elections to the council as early as possible, preferably before May 20.
We will follow social distancing norms. The EC has powers to reduce the notice period for the election. It should concede our plea for the sake of stability of the state government,” the cabinet member said. Secondly, the member said there was a proposal to knock at the doors of the Supreme Court for suspending the provision of the election within six months.
“In view of the lockdown, the government has postponed the last dates for all statutory activities by three months. Similarly, we feel the apex court should suspend the provision of six months as a special case. Thackeray was unable to contest the elec tions as these were postponed due to the lockdown,” he said.
He admitted that in the event Thackeray is not nominated on the council, he would have to quit. Thackeray can then be sworn in as CM again and get elected to either House within six months or a new CM would have to be elected.