After the continuous ups and downs in Maharashtra over the government formation, finally the president rule has been imposed in the state on Tuesday.
President Ram Nath Kovind signed the proclamation imposing President’s rule in Maharashtra based on the Governor’s recommendation.
Earlier in the evening, Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari had reportedly recommended President’s Rule in the state after none of the three parties, whom the Governor had invited to stake claim, showed an intent to form the government within the stipulated time.
After the BJP refused to stake claim of the government stating that it does not have required numbers, state Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari on Sunday night invited the Shiv Sena, which is the second-largest party, to form the government in the state. Shiv Sena asked for an extension of 48 hours to claim the government formation.
However, the Shiv Sena request for the three-day extension for submitting ‘requisite’ letters of support from other political parties was rejected by the Governor.
Following this, the Maharashtra Governor late on Monday invited the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) — ranked third largest in last month’s polls — to form the next government in the state.
Koshyari had given time to the NCP till 8.30 pm today to prove that it has the numbers to form the government.
Shiv Sena might move to the Supreme Court challenging the decision of the imposition of President rule in the state.
Senior Congress leader Abhishek Singhvi on the decision of the Governor rule in the state said, “There is a vast difference between a party saying ‘no’ and ‘yes’. BJP said no while the Shiv Sena said yes over the government formation but asked for time. Is three days too long?”
“On floor test you give 10 days 15 days time, these are not criminal but leaders who are elected by people. If a caretaker government would have continued for three or four more days, then what is the issue. Centre government’s assessment of Article 356 is to get time in the state to implements its ‘tactics’ to form the government” he added.
Singhvi further said that the Governor should have given time.
Senior Congress leader Kapil Sibal said, “Governor functions on centre’s directions, he does what the BJP wants. It is not about Maharashtra only, but it is about other states as well. This should not have been stretched this much as it was evident on October 24 itself that the Shiv Sena is not going with BJP”.
“In Karnataka, extra days can be given for the government formation but not in Maharashtra. If the Governor will function on centre’s directions, then what impact will it leave on the public”, Sibal said.
“After 2014, the governor’s role in every state is questionable. This is the misuse of authority and highly questionable”, he added.
Earlier in the day, a meeting of the NCP core-committee was also held. The party was looking set to empower Sharad Pawar to form an alternative government.
Addressing a press conference, NCP leader Nawab Malik said, “Today NCP meeting was held. All 54 MLAs were present. It has been decided that looking at the uncertainty in the state, we will empower Sharad Pawar ji to take a decision on alternative govt. A committee will be formed for the same which will be led by Sharad Pawar.”
“Governor called us to stake claim yesterday and gave us time till 8:30 pm today. Senior Congress leaders Ahmed Patel, Mallikarjun Kharge and KC Venugopal are coming to Mumbai and will meet Pawar sa’ab at 5 pm. A decision will be taken after their discussion,” he further said.
The NCP added that it is not possible to form an alternative government without the coming together of the three parties (Congress, NCP, Shiv Sena).
“The party (NCP) believes that it is not possible to form an alternative govt without the coming together of the three parties (Congress, NCP, Shiv Sena). If the three don’t come together, there cannot be a stable govt in Maharashtra.”
Till the imposition of the President rule, a string of political engagements took place in Maharashtra as well as in Delhi with leaders from the three parties holding discussions on the formation of the alliance government.
The tussle between BJP and its ally Sena intensified after the former refused two major demands – holding of the chief minister’s post on a rotational basis and implementation of a “50:50 power-sharing” formula, which entails equal allocation of ministerial portfolios.