Cong defamed by getting closer to Shiv Sena, says Sanjay Nirupam

Mumbai: Senior Congress leader Sanjay Nirupam on Saturday expressed dissent over the overnight twist in Maharashtra politics and urged party’s interim president Sonia Gandhi to “dissolve the Congress Working Committee (CWC)” as the party has been defamed by inching closer to Shiv Sena during the crisis.

Speaking to ANI, Nirupam said, “People would be thinking I will be happy by today’s developments but I am actually very sad. Congress has been unnecessarily defamed in this and thinking of alliance with Shiv Sena was a mistake.”

The Congress leader, who has been vocal against the tri-party alliance of Congress, NCP and Shiv Sena in an attempt to give Maharashtra a stable government, appealed Sonia Gandhi to first “dissolve Congress Working Committee”.

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“I have been saying not to move closer to Shiv Sena and I would like to urge not to do so in the future. Congress leader Rahul Gandhi should come forward and strengthen the party with those leaders,” he said.

In an overnight development, BJP’s Devendra Fadnavis earlier this morning took oath as the Maharashtra Chief Minister for the second consecutive term while Pawar took oath as Deputy Chief Minister of the state. The oath was administered by Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari to Fadnavis and Pawar at Raj Bhawan.

The move came at a time when deliberations between Congress, NCP and Shiv Sena on government formation seemingly reached the final stage on Friday.

Earlier, NCP supremo Sharad Pawar had claimed that there was a consensus on Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray as chief minister of the alliance government.

The BJP, which emerged as the single largest party in last month’s assembly elections, could not stake claim to form a government as its ally Shiv Sena remained firm on rotating the Chief Minister’s post and equal sharing of Cabinet berths.

Shiv Sena parted its ways with BJP to explore ways to form a government. It, however, failed to prove the support of the required number of MLAs in the time given by Koshyari.

The Governor had then invited NCP, the third-largest party, to prove its ability to form the government failing which President’s Rule was imposed in the state.

The BJP won 105 seats in the 288-member assembly followed by Shiv Sena 56, NCP 54 and Congress 44.

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