Mumbai: In a fresh twist to the ongoing political drama in Maharashtra, the Shiv Sena on Monday expressed its willingness and staked its claim to form the government in the state.
“We were given 24 hours’ time to express our willingness to form the government. We have shown our willingness and also staked our claim. We sought additional time of two days from the Governor, which was declined,” Shiv Sena leader and MLA Aditya Thackeray told a media conference at Raj Bhavan on Monday evening.
He said the Governor had accepted the claim, but refused to give extension of time, and that Sena would make another trip to Raj Bhavan soon.
Congress, NCP and Sena leaders have claimed that letters of support have already been submitted to the Sena leadership, and that the Congress has also sent a fax in this regard to the Sena.
A Sena leader said the party was required to submit the original letters of support and there was also a possibility of parading supporting legislators of all parties at Raj Bhavan, which would take time to organize.
The disappointing development came after a hectic day in which Congress Interim President Sonia Gandhi spoke with Nationalist Congress Party President Sharad Pawar, and a letter of support was faxed to the Shiv Sena, according to sources on all sides.
Earlier, Pawar met Sena President Uddhav Thackeray in Mumbai to finalise the understanding, and later Thackeray spoke with Sonia Gandhi to make a formal request for support.
As the Sena delegation reached Raj Bhavan, celebrations broke out among Shiv Sainiks, with distribution of sweets and bursting fire-crackers in different parts of the state, including Mumbai and Thane.