Legislative Assembly under suspended animation: MHA
President's rule has been imposed in Maharashtra, a Ministry of Home Affairs spokesperson has confirmed. President's rule in the State is for six months, but can be withdrawn earlier as well.
At a press briefing, an MHA official said that the results came 15 days ago, there was no probability of a government formation so the Governor recommended President's rule.
The Governor made a recommendation in a letter dated Nov 12 that a situation has arisen in which it was not possible to form a stable government in the State. He is satisfied that the government of State cannot be carried out in accordance with provisions of the Constitution. Left with no alternative, the Governor was constrained to send a report under provision of Article 356 of the Constitution.
Recommendation made by the Governor to the President was sent to the MHA after which the Union Cabinet has decided today to recommend to the President to issue a proclamation under Article 356 (1) of the Constitution, thereby imposing President's Rule in relation to State of Maharashtra and keeping the Legislative Assembly under suspended animation. The President has approved the proclamation.
The report was sent in the afternoon after which the Cabinet meeting was convened. There was no exclusive mention of horse trading in the Governor's report to the Centre. It mostly said that all efforts failed to form the government in Maharashtra.
Congress leaders have arrived at YB Chavan centre to hold talks with the NCP chief Sharad Pawar. Congress leaders Mallikarjun Kharge, KC Venugopal, and Ahmed Patel arrive. Uddhav Thackeray is going to the Madh island resort where his party MLAs are put up, to hold a meeting.
The MHA has sent the file recommending Presidents rule in Maharashtra to the Presidents office for signing.
Grave travesty of democracy, mockery of constitution: Surjewala
Governor Koshiyari has committed a grave travesty of the democracy and made a mockery of the Constitutional process in recommending Presidents Rule in Maharashtra, Congress spokesperson Randeep Surjewala has said.
Quoting the S.R. Bommai judgment, Mr. Surjewala said the Governor should have called Congress, the fourth largest party before taking a call on President's Rule, if the BJP, Shiv Sena and NCP failed to form government.
He also claimed the Governor didn't allot adequate time. "Why the completely arbitrary allotment of time? 48 hours to BJP, 24 hrs to Sena & not even 24 hours to NCP, before the President's Rule. This is unashamedly dishonest and politically motivated," Mr. Surjewala tweeted.
Butchery of constitution, says Sitaram Yechury
CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury has dubbed Maharashtra Governor Bhagat Singh Koshiyari's decision as "butchery of our constitution".
"The Governor of Maharashtra had given time till 8.30 pm today to NCP leader Shri Sharad Pawar. Then how can he recommend Presidents rule before the expiry of the deadline? This is the butchery of our Constitution," tweeted.
Home Secretary Ajay Kumar Bhalla has confirmed to The Hindu that Maharashtra will be heading to President's Rule.
He said there will be a press meet at 5.30 pm to give the details.
Sena moves SC
The Shiv Sena has moved the Supreme Court against the Governor's decision to allow only 24-hours to the party to show the ability to form government. Earlier, the party pointed out that the Governor gave 48-hours for BJP to prove its majority.
In the petition, Shiv Sena has challenged the "arbitrary, unconstitutional, unreasonable, capricious and malafide" decision of the Governor on Nov 11 to reject their request for three days to submit letters of support to prove majority to form government in Maharashtra.
Maharashtra Governor recommends President's Rule in the State
Even as the Nationalist Congress Party, Shiv Sena and the Congress are discussing ways to form the government in Maharashtra, Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari has recommended President's Rule in the State.
A media release from the Raj Bhavan at 3.16 pm on Tuesday read: "The Governor of Maharashtra Shri Bhagat SIngh Koshyari having been satisfied that as the government of the State of Maharashtra connot be carried on in accordance with the Constitution, has today submitted a report as contemplated by the provisions of Article 356 of the Constitution."
The Governor's Office has confirmed that no recommendation for President's Rule in Maharashtra has been made, NCP spokesperson Nawab Malik told media on Tuesday afternoon.
He also said the party has authorised Sharad Pawar to form alternative govt to end political instability in the State.
Confirming that talks with Congress and Shiv Sena are continuing, Mr. Malik said Mr. Pawar will be meeting senior Congress leaders Ahmed Patel, Mallikarjun Kharge and K.C. Venugopal at 5 pm.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi is chairing a Cabinet meet ahead of his Brazil visit this afternoon to attend the BRICS summit.
President's Rule in Maharashtra is one of the agendas at the Cabinet meeting, senior government official told The Hindu.
President's Rule in Maharashtra?
Maharshtra Governor office staff including Principal Secretary to Governor Santosh Kumar, Deputy Secretary Ranjit Kumar chairing a crucial meeting since morning on political developments in Maharshtra. The meeting is ongoing, sources in Raj Bhavan said.
A curcial meet between senior staff at Raj Bhavan is ongoing to discuss modalities of imposing President's Rule in the State, sources in the Governor's office said. The meeting is being chaired by Principal Secretary to Governor Santosh Kumar, Deputy Secretary Ranjit Kumar.
Senior Congress leaders K C Venugopal, Mallikarjun Kharge and Ahmed Patel will be travelling to Mumbai to meet NCP chief Sharad Pawar.
Earlier in the day, Ms. Gandhi spoke to Mr. Pawar. The Congress is yet to decide on supporting Shiv Sena to form the government in Maharashtra.
Congress leaders are meeting at Sonia Gandhi's residence to discuss Maharashtra logjam.
When The Hindu contacted former Maharashtra chief minister Prithviraj Chavan, he said Ms. Gandhi "is positive" of supporting the Shiv Sena.
"The Sena quit NDA only yesterday. The talks to form a government began only a day ago. Despite that, our president Soniaji is positive about the support. But everything cannot be finalised in a day or two," he said.
"Everything has to be planned in detail. Any attempt to rush things will be problematic in future. It may take more than a day or two. But once planned, it will be without any glitch," Mr. Chavan added.
Venugopal, Kharge 'defer' Mumbai visit
Senior Congress leaders K C Venugopal and Mallikarjun Kharge, who were supposed to come to Mumbai on Tuesday to discuss modalities of support to the Shiv Sena for government formation in Maharashtra, have deferred their visit, a Congress leader said.
The two leaders postponed their visit after NCP chief Sharad Pawar conveyed that state leaders of both the parties will first discuss the terms and conditions of government formation, former Maharashtra Congress president Manikrao Thakare told PTI.
The Maharashtra Congress leaders will discuss the broad contours of government formation with their NCP counterparts on Tuesday before inviting the Shiv Sena for talks, he said.
Congress chief Sonia Gandhi on Monday discussed the states political situation with Pawar and accordingly, it was decided that the state NCP and Congress leaders will discuss the terms and conditions and a common minimum programme for government formation later in the day, he said.
Congress giving Maharashtra on a platter to BJP: AAP
With the Congress taking it slow on government formation in Maharashtra, the Aam Aadmi Partys state leader Preeti Sharma Menon on Tuesday said the Congress leadership always puts the party before the nation and claimed that they are giving Maharashtra on a platter to the BJP.
Congress leadership always puts their party before the nation. In Lok Sabha, they stubbornly refused regional alliances and helped BJP sweep. Now they are giving Maharashtra on a platter to the BJP. Its moribund attitude will decimate it soon, Menon tweeted.
She also said that the Congress MLAs in Maharashtra should join Sharad Pawar, President of Nationalist Congress Party, adding its really time for Congress to die.
Pawar visits Sena MP Sanjay Raut in hospital
NCP chief Sharad Pawar on Tuesday visited Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut at a hospital in Mumbai where the latter underwent angioplasty.
Mr. Pawars visit to 57-year-old Raut, admitted to the Lilavati Hospital here, comes in the midst of the ongoing political drama in Maharashtra.
What transpired between the two leaders during the meet, which came in the backdrop of the political crisis in the state, was not immediately known.
The NCP president was accompanied by his grandnephew and MLA Rohit Pawar.
President accepts Sawant's resignation
President Ram Nath Kovind on Tuesday accepted the resignation of Shiv Sena MP Arvind Sawant from the Union council of ministers with immediate effect, a Rashtrapati Bhavan spokesperson said. Mr. Sawants resignation has been accepted on advice of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, according to the spokesperson.
"The President of India, as advised by the Prime Minister, has accepted the resignation of Shri Arvind Ganpat Sawant from the Union Council of Ministers, with immediate effect, under clause (2) of Article 75 of the Constitution.
"Further, as advised by the Prime Minister, the President has directed that Shri Prakash Javadekar, Cabinet Minister, be assigned the charge of the Ministry of Heavy Industries and Public Enterprises, in addition to his existing portfolios," the release from Rashtrapati Bhavan said.
Maharashtra Congress MLAs stay put in Jaipur resort
Amid high drama around the formation of a government in Maharashtra, Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot on Monday briefed the Congress MLAs-elect staying at a luxury resort near here about the partys stand and obtained their views on the latest developments. The Congress has said that it is in discussion with the Nationalist Congress Party.
Mr. Gehlot, accompanied by his Chhattisgarh counterpart, Bhupesh Baghel, reached the resort late in the evening and had a meeting for more than 30 minutes with the newly elected legislators. The MLAs were shifted to the resort on the Jaipur-Delhi National Highway, about 20 km from the city, on Friday and Saturday to thwart the poaching attempts during the current impasse.
Congress divided in Maharashtra
Amid the political uncertainty in Maharashtra, the newly elected Congress MLAs from the State, staying at a luxury resort, near here, on Sunday authorised party president Sonia Gandhi to nominate the leader of the Congress Legislature Party (CLP).
The party declared that it had accepted the mandate to sit in the Opposition. Senior Congress leader and former Union Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde arrived in the evening to convey Ms. Gandhis message to the MLAs and interact with them to get their views on the partys stand on the formation of a government.
(With inputs from our Correspondents and agencies)