Rift among Maha-Vikas-Agadhi deepens as 5 Sena corporators joined NCP

Mumbai: All is not well with the Maha-Vikas-Aghadi partners and the rifts between the ruling allies seem to be widening after 5 Shiv Sena corporators joined the NCP last week. The Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray has expressed his displeasure and asked the NCP leadership to send them back to their party.

Five Sena Corporators from Parner Nagar Panchayat in Ahmednagar joined the NCP in presence of Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar in Baramati on Saturday. Mudassir Sayyad, Nandkumar Deshmukh, Kishan Gandhade, Vaishali Auti and Nanda Deshmane have joined the NCP, ditching their party, Sena when the chief minister Uddhav Thackeray-led Shiv Sena, Sharad Pawar’s NCP and Congress run the coalition government in Maharashtra since December last year.

The incident proved that though the Sena and NCP had formed a coalition government with the help of Congress in Maharashtra, but at the local level, it seems Sena and the NCP are still competitors and arch-rivals.

According to reports reaching here on Tuesday, the NCP MLA Nilesh Lanke, who was present when the corporators made the switch, said that the five members were also reportedly in talks with the BJP. However, the senior leadership of the NCP was of the opinion that Shiv Sena members joining the BJP might hurt the ruling MVA coalition at the state, hence it was NCP which approached the five aforementioned members and offered the alternative to Sena

However, the development comes as the deepening rift between the Maha-Vikas -Aghadi became evident after the chief minister Thackeray revoked a transfer order issued by Mumbai police. The Home Minister Anil Deshmukh says that the Mumbai Commissioner had reportedly issued transfer orders of 10 Mumbai Police DCPs on Friday, without consulting Thackeray or himself.

These five corporators of Parner Municipal Corporation quit Shiv Sena party and joined the NCP in presence of deputy CM, Ajit Pawar. All these 5 corporators were in touch with Local NCP MLA Lanke who took them to Baramati to meet Ajit Pawar and inducted them in the Party.

It’s a set back for Sena as Parner city is considered as the bastion of the Sena. For many years Shiv Sena is ruling the Parner Municipal Corporation under the leadership of former Sena Minister Vijay Auti. By this move, it is quite clear that NCP is eyeing to win the upcoming election of Parner Municipal Corporation.

Earlier, several ministers from the Congress and NCP, the coalition partners of Sena have accused Uddhav Thackeray of depending more on bureaucrats than his alliance partners, alleging that they were being ‘sidelined’. The Congress chief Balasaheb Thorat, minister Ashok Chavan have openly stated that the party has had no say in any of the decision being taken by the Thackeray-government. All three allies have maintained that the alliance is safe.

There has been discontent among the Sena-NCP-Congress govt since the cabinet expansion in January. There has a feeling in the Sena camp that the NCP has walked away with not only the highest number of portfolios but also the most important ones as the Sena, for example, had to cede the Home and the Finance portfolio.

Apart from this, Congress and Sena have been at loggerheads since the formation of the alliance over issues like Hindutva, Ram Janmabhoomi, CAA, NRC, Savarkar and now on battle against COVID-19 etc, with the NCP playing the peacemaker.

The rift between the ruling partners was quite visible in last week of May when the Congress leader Rahul Gandhi said that the Congress is just supporting Maharashtra government, but it is not in the key decision-making role in Maharashtra.

While maintaining that the Congress was not a key decision-maker in the Maharashtra government when asked about the rising number of COVID-19 cases in Maharashtra,
Gandhi also pointed out there was a difference between running the government and supporting a government.

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