As Pawar’s Meetings Fuel Speculation, NCP & Sena Say ‘Govt Strong’

There’s speculation about tensions in the Maharashtra government and questions are being raised about its stability.

2 min read
File image of Maharashtra CM Uddhav Thackeray and NCP chief Sharad Pawar.

Speculation about tensions in the Maharashtra government and questions about its stability surfaced on Monday, 25 May, as Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) supremo Sharad Pawar held a meeting at the former's residence, Matoshree.

Hours before that meeting, Pawar had also met with the state governor, BS Koshiyari.

A day later, Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut sought to refute the speculation, saying on Twitter, "Sharad Pawar and Uddhav Thackeray met at Matoshree last evening. They spoke for one-and-a-half hours. If anybody is spreading misinformation about the stability of the government, it's nothing but their stomach ache. The government is strong. No worries."


In another tweet, Raut said, "A vaccine to coronavirus and a dose to make the Thackeray government fall, both are yet to be discovered. Studies are underway. The Opposition should quarantine itself. Any efforts to destabilise the Maharashtra government will only boomerang."

“If prominent leaders like Pawarji and Uddhavji sit and hold talks when the state and the country are going through difficult times, then no one should be troubled. I’ve not heard any talk of it (President’s Rule) from Amit Shahji or Gadkariji, so how do I believe anything?”
Sanjay Raut, as quoted by ANI

Like Raut, NCP leader leader Nawab Malik also sought to offer assurance about the stability of the state government, saying it will complete its term.

According to NDTV, there has been speculation about tensions in the government over the coronavirus outbreak and lockdown plan, with Pawar calling for opening up of Maharashtra gradually.

Pawar Met Governor Earlier

Significantly, the meeting between Thackeray and Pawar took place after the NCP chief met state Governor BS Koshyari early on Monday, with the NCP claiming the meeting took place on the invitation of the governor and no political issues came up for discussion, reported news agency PTI.

Pawar was reportedly one of the key leaders from Maharashtra who had openly complained about Koshyari’s “intervention” in the functioning of the state administration.

Asked if Congress is unhappy with Pawar's meeting with CM Thackeray, state party chief Balasaheb Thorat told ANI, "Congress is not unhappy. All the three parties hold meetings every week, where decisions are taken. All parties are working together."

Meanwhile, Bharatiya Janata Party MP Narayan Rane also met the state governor on Monday and demanded the imposition of President's Rule, raising the state government's "failure" in dealing with the coronavirus outbreak, saying the Shiv Sena-NCP-Congress coalition has messed up the administrative affairs at a time of unprecedented crisis, the news agency further reported.

Maharashtra has recorded the highest number of coronavirus cases in the country so far at 52,667, while 1,695 people in the state have died.

(With inputs from PTI , ANI and NDTV.)

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