Eknath Shinde, Devendra Fadnavis call on President Kovind, Rajnath
Maharashtra chief minister Eknath Shinde and his deputy Devendra Fadnavis met President Ram Nath Kovind and defence minister Rajnath Singh here on Saturday.
The meetings followed lengthy deliberations over the power-sharing arrangement in Maharashtra between the BJP and the Shinde-led faction of the Shiv Sena at the residence of Union home minister Amit Shah that began late on Friday night and stretched till the small hours of Saturday.
Shinde began his day by offering floral tributes at the statues of Chhatrapati Shivaji, B R Ambedkar and Mahatma Jyotiba Phule at the Maharashtra Sadan here.
In the aftermath of their first meeting with the President after assuming power on June 30 following the rebellion within the Shiv Sena, Shinde and Fadnavis were scheduled to meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday.
At the meeting with Shah, the two Maharashtra leaders are learnt to have discussed the broad contours of the power-sharing formula. “I am confident that under the guidance of Narendra Modi, both of you will serve the people faithfully and take Maharashtra to newer heights of development,” Shah tweeted.
महाराष्ट्राचे नवनियुक्त मुख्यमंत्री @mieknathshinde जी व उप-मुख्यमंत्री @Dev_Fadnavis जी यांची भेट घेऊन त्यांना शुभेच्छा दिल्या.— Amit Shah (@AmitShah) July 8, 2022
मला विश्वास आहे की @narendramodi जींच्या मार्गदर्शनाखाली आपण दोघे जनतेची निष्ठापूर्वक सेवा कराल आणि महाराष्ट्राला विकासाच्या नवीन उंचीवर घेऊन जाल. pic.twitter.com/leTdbpulUQ
The visit of Shinde and Fadnavis to the national capital comes ahead of a crucial hearing in the Supreme Court on July 11 on a petition filed by the Thackeray-led Shiv Sena, seeking the disqualification of Shinde and 15 MLAs of his faction from the Assembly.
"We have faith in the judiciary,” Shinde told reporters here on Friday, asserting that the group led by him had the support of two-thirds of the Shiv Sena MLAs.
The Shiv Sena had 55 MLAs before the split triggered by Shinde's revolt. Nearly 40 Shiv Sena MLAs had backed Shinde, who also enjoys the support of Independent legislators and MLAs from smaller outfits.
"The speaker has also granted us recognition,” Shinde said, referring to the decision of the newly-elected speaker of the Maharashtra Assembly, Rahul Narwekar.
Shinde was sworn in as the chief minister on June 30 with the support of the BJP after he rebelled against Thackeray, walking out of the Shiv Sena with a large chunk of MLAs that led to the fall of the Maharashtra Vikas Aghadi government. Shinde won a trust vote in the Maharashtra Assembly on July 4.