Expressing hope that the Supreme Court’s final verdict on the political developments in Maharashtra will be delivered soon, Opposition leader Ajit Pawar on Thursday said that the verdict will be a determining factor in Indian democracy.
“We are hopeful the Supreme Court will do justice. If the court upholds the current political power shift in the state, it will amount to endangering Indian democracy,” he said. Pawar’s caution comes in wake of a series of petitions before the apex court in connection with the disqualification of members from factions of the Shiv Sena led by Uddhav Thackeray and rebel leader Eknath Shinde who is now the state’s Chief Minister. On Thursday, the Supreme Court referred the issue to a five-bench larger bench for further hearing.
The matter before the court also relates to determining which of these two factions is the “real Sena”. After raising the banner of revolt, Shinde and nearly 50 MLAs declared themselves to be the real Shiv Sena and sought the disqualification of 15 MLAs under Thackeray. Similarly, the Thackeray faction has also demanded the disqualification of rebels belonging to the Shinde camp citing violation of the whip. The switch by the MLAs reduced the majority of the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) coalition government, enabling the BJP-Shinde faction to take over power in the state.