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Maharashtra: Smaller NDA allies including RPI back Devendra Fadnavis for CM


ANI Politics
Smaller NDA parties in Maharashtra have backed Devendra Fadnavis as the Chief Minister, said Union Minister Ramdas Athawale.
Leaders of these parties including Republican Party of India (RPI), Mahadeo Jankar of Rashtriya Samaj Paksha, Vinayak Mete of Shiv Sangram, Sada Bhau Khot of Swabhimani Paksha met on Thursday at Suruchi Building in Mumbai for a meeting. However, BJP and Shiv Sena were not a part of the meeting.
The NDA alliance partners met to lend support to BJP and made the decision under the leadership of RPI chief Ramdas Athawale. Notably, the candidates of these allies contested the polls on BJP ticket.
After the meeting, Athawale, who was vocal about the demands of the allies, said that a resolution was passed to congratulate Devendra Fadnavis for being elected as the leader of BJP legislative party and NDA partners in Maharashtra supporting his name as for the chief ministerial post.
"Mahayuti (BJP-Shiv Sena alliance) has got a clear majority. Yesterday, Devendra Fadnavis was elected BJP legislative leader. We have decided to support his name for the chief minister as he is the only front runner for us. We want one chief minister who continues for the entire five-year term," RPI chief Ramdas Athawale told reporters here.
His statement comes at a time when BJP-Shiv Sena are yet to sort out their differences and stake claim for the formation of government in the state after the recently-concluded polls.
Speaking on the chief ministerial post for Shiv Sena scion Aditya Thackeray, Athavale said: "Aditya Thackeray is Uddhav Ji's son and we have respect for him. But for now, Devendra Fadnavis is the right candidate as BJP is the larger party. Shiv Sena should be given good portfolios. I can't say about the future of Aditya but for now, Fadnavis is our only Chief Minister's choice."
He added, "If Aditya Thackeray cannot become the Chief Minister, there is no point in thinking if he is capable or not. The day he becomes the Chief Minister we will talk about it. For now, there is no question of Aditya as the Chief Minister."
The RPI chief said that BJP-Shiv Sena will form the government soon.
The BJP-Shiv Sena alliance won an absolute majority in the Maharashtra assembly polls with the former emerging as the single largest party in the state with 105 seats. Shiv Sena, on the other hand, bagged 56 seats in the elections.
After the polls, Shiv Sena has been adamant about the implementation of the 50:50 formula proposed by BJP during the 2019 Lok Sabha polls. The formula is a rotational arrangement in which a Chief Minister from each party will split the five-year term equally.

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First Published: Oct 31 2019 | 3:07 PM IST

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