Political developments are taking place thick and fast in Maharashtra with the Governor inviting NCP on Monday to form the government soon after it rejected to grant Shiv Sena more time to muster numbers. Earlier in the day, Shiv Sena MP Arvind Sawant quit as the NDA minister and snapped the Sena-BJP alliance.
The NCP said it will take a final decision after discussing everything with its ally Congress, which has been unable to decide whether it should lend support to a Hindutva party like Shiv Sena even after multiple meetings. Congress will hold further consultations on the issue while the ball now stays in NCP's court.
Here are the highlights from the day:
9:30 PM: "As per the procedure, the governor has given us the letter (to stake claim to form government ) being the third-largest party in Maharashtra. We suggested to him that we'll have to talk to our allies and we'll get back to him as early as possible. Our deadline is 8.30 pm tomorrow," says NCP leader Jayant Patil.
9:05 PM: NCP leaders Ajit Pawar, Dhananjay Munde along with others arrive at Raj Bhavan to meet Maharashtra Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari.
"We've been called to form the govt. As per the letter given by the Governor, we'll hold discussions with Congress & see how a stable govt can be provided to the state," NCP leader Nawab Malik was quoted as saying by ANI. He added, "we will get the letter today and make a final decision by tomorrow after holding discussions with our ally Congress."
8:50 PM: The NCP has said that they were called by the governor for a meeting.
"At 8:30 pm the Governor called us and asked me to come to meet him. Along with Chhagan Bhujbal, Jayant Patil and others, I am going to meet him. We have no idea as to why he called us. The governor is an important person so we are going to meet him," NCP leader Ajit Pawar said.
8:09 PM: "Our AICC President has spoken to Sharad Pawar ji. Further discussion will take place in Mumbai tomorrow," said Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge amid uncertainty over Congress and NCP lending support to Shiv Sena to form government.
7: 42 PM: "Our claim to form the government has not been legally rejected, it is still valid. We have come today as we were given a 24-hour deadline." said Aaditya Thackeray, adding, "As the second-largest party we had the right to be called to form government. We have asked for an extension of 48 hours to fulfil all formalities." But Governor Koshyiari declined to grant more time to Shiv Sena.
He said the governor had asked the Sena to "show willingness to form government" and they have done that today. He added that talks were on with NCP and Congress.
7:33 PM: Congress states it will hold further discussions with ally NCP on the political situation in Maharashtra. Shiv Sena is expecting support from the two parties in order to help it from the government.
7:26 PM: Shiv Sena mouthpiece Saamana says the Congress and NCP have sent letters of support to the party to form government.
7:08 PM: Aaditya Thackeray, Eknath Shinde and other senior Sena leaders meet Governor B S Koshyari at Raj Bhavan. The party is expected to stake claim to form the government with support from NCP and Congress.
7:00 PM: Bacchu Kadu, an Independent MLA reaches Raj Bhavan, tells ANI, "Three of us (independent candidates) have come here. Whosoever Uddhav sahab will decide, will be the Chief Minister.
6:40 PM: Shiv Sena leader Aaditya Thackeray and other leaders of the party reach Raj Bhavan to meet the governor.
6:29 PM: The Shiv Sena is set to form government in Maharashtra with support from NCP and Congress, said sources.
6:01 PM: A delegation of Sena leaders, including Aditya U. Thackeray and legislative party leader Eknath Shinde, has left for Raj Bhavan this evening to meet Governor B. S. Koshyari.
5:48 PM: In a phone call to Sonia Gandhi, Uddhav Thackeray sought Congress' support to Shiv Sena to form the government in Maharashtra, the PTI reported. The Shiv Sena has time till 7.30 pm today to stake claim.
5:45 PM: Top Congress leaders, including former Maharashtra chief ministers Ashok Chavan, Prithviraj Chavan and Sushilkumar Shinde as well as state unit chief Balasaheb Thorat, has concluded a meeting with party president Sonia Gandhi today evening to decide on whether or not to support the Shiv Sena in forming a government.
Earlier in the morning, all senior members of the Congress Working Committee (CWC) met at Gandhi's residence. However, the meeting was inconclusive.
5:25 PM: Congress interim President Sonia Gandhi and Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray held a brief telephonic conversation a short while back, reported ANI.
5:15 PM: Sena leader Sanjay Raut's brother Sunil Raut told ANI, "Since last 15 days Sanjay Saheb has been suffering from chest pain. But it's not serious. He has been admitted to the hospital for a routine check-up. I think today evening his angiography will be performed and he will be released in a day or two."
#WATCH Sunil Raut,brother of Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut: Since last 15 days Sanjay Sahab has been suffering from chest pain. But it's not serious.He has been admitted for routine check up.I think today evening his angiography will be performed&he'll be released in a day or two. pic.twitter.com/8Wk1cys4oH— ANI (@ANI) November 11, 2019
5:10 PM: Former Prime Minister and JD-S chief HD Deve Gowda said: "If Congress gives support to Shiv Sena, they should not disturb it for the next five years, only then people will trust the Congress party."
"Bal Thackeray gave place to the BJP in Maharashtra; LK Advani and former PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee went to Balasaheb's residence and requested him for seats in the state. Today, the BJP overrode that and that is why Uddhav Thackeray has taken a stand that he will teach them a lesson. Now, it's for Congress and NCP to put the BJP down," he added.
4:30 PM: Congress leaders AK Antony and Ahmed Patel have arrived at Sonia Gandhi's residence. Party's Maharashtra leaders have been called to Delhi for further discussions over the political situation in Maharashtra. The meeting will be held shortly.
3:45 PM: Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut has been admitted to the Lilavati hospital in Mumbai, reports ANI.
3:19 PM: Shiv Sena leader Arvind Sawant, who resigned from the NDA government, has put his weight behind newly elected MLA Aaditya Thackeray for the top post. "You will get to know his potential if you watch him on YouTube. What a potential that young boy has! There's a true leader. He is a visionary leader of the country."
3:14 PM: Cricketer-turned-politician and Lok Sabha MP Gautam Gambhir has slammed Shiv Sena for walking out of the alliance with BJP and said that they can't have the Chief Minister post in Maharashtra by winning only 56 seats.
2:40 PM: Senior Congress leaders, who were lodged in the resort in Jaipur with all newly-elected Maharashtra Congress MLAs, have left to attend the party's working committee meeting in Delhi today.
2:30 PM: The meeting between NCP Chief Sharad Pawar and Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray has concluded in Mumbai. They are said to have discussed the possibility of an alliance to form the Maharashtra government.
2:09 PM: Congress leader BK Hariprasad has said that to keep "the arrogant" BJP out of power, Congress may think of alternatives on government formation.
"We will have to keep the arrogant BJP out of power in Maharashtra. Maharashtra is one of the worst-hit in terms of farmers' issues. In the interest of the farmers and the economy, we may have to think of alternatives," Hariprasad told ANI.
1:40 PM: Shiv Sena MP Arvind Sawant says the BJP went back on their pre-election promises. It would not have been morally right for me to continue, so I have resigned as Union Minister.
1:30 PM: News agency ANI has reported that a Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray is meeting his NCP counterpart Sharad Pawar to discuss the ongoing political impasse in Maharashtra.
1:26 PM: Senior Congress leader Jyotiraditya Scindia has said that an odd situation has presented itself in Maharashtra but the formation of a government in the state is of utmost importance. When asked about the political situation in Maharashtra and whether Congress will extend support to a Shiv Sena-led government in the state, Scindia said: "Discussions are underway on the matter, but it is of utmost importance that a government is formed in Maharashtra."
12:45 PM: Nawab Malik also said that Congress MLAs were in favour of supporting Shiv Sena-led government, but Congress Working Committee (CWC) is the supreme body to decide their party line.
12:34 PM: Nawab Malik, the Mumbai NCP chief, has said that party's core group meeting on government formation in Maharashtra has concluded. "We are waiting for Congress to make a decision. We fought elections together and whatever will be decided, it will be decided together," he said.
12:20 PM: Senior Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge has said the CWC discussion on whether or not the party should open its options to forming the government with Shiv Sena remained inconclusive. "We will meet the state leaders at 4 PM and take a call," he said. Reports also suggest that CWC has authorised Sonia Gandhi to make the final decision.
11:40 AM: Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut on Monday said his party is working towards a common minimum programme (CMP) with NCP and Congress in a bid to form a coalition government in Maharashtra.
"Sharad Pawar and Congress want that we should form the government which should run on a common minimum programme (CMP). There is a need for it today. We are working towards it," Raut said.
11:30 AM: Amid talks that the NCP and Congress may support the Shiv Sena in government formation in Maharashtra, NCP chief Sharad Pawar has said whatever be the decision, the two parties will take it together.
10:42 AM: A meeting of the Congress working committee is underway on Monday morning to decide on whether to support the Shiv Sena in forming the government in Maharashtra, PTI reported.
10:28 AM: Senior Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut on Monday said if the BJP was not willing to keep its word of sharing the chief minister's post in Maharashtra, there was no point in continuing the alliance.
9:57 AM: Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut says BJP's arrogance not to share chief minister's post led to this situation. "There's no way this can continue like this," he said.
9:48 AM: NCP chief Sharad Pawar to chair party's core group meeting in Mumbai over the current political situation in the state. Praful Patel, Supriya Sule, Ajit Pawar, Jayant Patil & other party leaders will be present.
9:34 AM: Earlier on Sunday, Congress leader Sanjay Nirupam had said that if Congress and the NCP will take support from the Shiv Sena to form the government in the state, it will be fatal for his party.
9:28 AM: Congress has called a meeting of its top leaders on Monday to deliberate upon offering support to a Shiv Sena-led government in Maharashtra and its own role in that.
Maharashtra Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut is also likely to meet top Congress leaders in New Delhi on Monday to seek support for his party's government in the state. Top Congress sources said he may visit Interim President Sonia Gandhi, but no meeting has been sought as yet.
9:25 AM: Against the backdrop of Maharashtra Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari inviting the Shiv Sena to form a government, party leader Sanjay Raut on Monday said if he shows concern towards the route, the destiny would not like it.
"Raaste ki parwah karunga to manzil bura maan jaayegi....", Raut said in a tweet in Hindi.
Maharashtra Live Updates | NCP Chief Sharad Pawar Meets Uddhav Thackeray, Cong Yet To Make Decision