Amid high drama over the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government's future as at least 20 Shiv Sena MLAs remain holed up in a resort in Gujarat, Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) supremo Sharad Pawar said that Eknath Shinde's rebellion is Shiv Sena's internal matter.
"Eknath Shinde never told us about his CM ambitions. This is an internal issue of Shiv Sena, whatever they decide we're with them. I am sure Uddhav Thackeray will handle the situation," Pawar told reporters on Tuesday, 21 June.
"We are sure that there is no need to make any changes in the MVA government for that," he said.
Over a score of MLAs, led by Maharashtra Cabinet Minister Eknath Shinde, are said to be camping at Surat's Le Meridian Hotel. Meanwhile, at least 30 MLAs, including the ones with Shinde at the hotel, are incommunicado, sources say.
'Attempt To Pull Down Maha Govt for 3rd Time'
The NCP leader, who is in Delhi to discuss the Opposition's candidate for the upcoming presidential election, said that there is an attempt to pull down the Maharashtra government for the third time.
He added that there was no question of his party allying with the BJP to form a government in Maharashtra.
Speaking on the cross-voting in Monday's MLC elections in Maharashtra, which led to all five candidates of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) securing victory, Pawar said that it will not affect the functioning of the MVA government in any manner.
"Once Uddhav Thackeray finishes his internal discussions with the party members, I will speak to him. This is Shiv Sena's internal matter and they will be able to resolve it," he added.
"Looking at the situation, I am sure we will find a way," Pawar went on to say.
Several MLAs including Abdul Sattar, Bharat Gogavale, Vishwanath Bhoir, Sanjay Gaikwad, Mahesh Shinde, Tanaji Sawant, and Ramesh Bornare are believed to be among those at the hotel with Eknath Shinde.
Sena leader Sanjay Raut, however, maintained that "everything will be fine" and claimed that the party is "in touch with all MLAs who are at the resort."