Sonia to give a miss to swearing-in but pens letter to Uddhav

MUMBAI: Ahead of his swearing-in ceremony, Congress interim president Sonia Gandhi on Thursday wrote a letter to Uddhav Thackeray who is set to take the oath as the Maharashtra Chief Minister.

Ms. Gandhi and her son and former party chief Rahul Gandhi are set to give the swearing-in ceremony in Mumbai”s Shivaji Park a miss.

In a letter to Thackeray, Sonia Gandhi said, “(Uddhav”s son) Aaditya met me yesterday and extended your invitation to attend the swearing-in ceremony this evening in Mumbai. I regret that I am unable to be present at the function.”

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Stressing unity of the alliance, she said: “The people of Maharashtra expect the alliance to provide cohesive, purposeful, responsible, responsive and transparent administration and our collective effort will undoubtedly be to ensure that these expectations are fulfilled.”

According to Congress sources, the party chief is skipping the swearing-in ceremony due to her health issues.

Meanwhile earlier in the day, Rahul Gandhi, asked if he was going to attend the swearing in ceremony, quipped: “Some suspense should be there.”

Party sources, however, said that both the Gandhis have conveyed their best wishes to the new government.

The Shiv Sena-Nationalist Congress Party (NCP)-Congress have forged the Maha Vikas Aghadi alliance in the state after series of parleys between their leaders after a month long drama in the state over government formation. President”s rule was imposed in the state on November 12 after none of the parties were able to form the government.

The President”s rule was removed on Saturday after Devendra Fadnavis took oath as Chief Minister along with NCP supremo Sharad Pawar”s nephew Ajit Pawar surprising the three parties. The three parties then approached the Supreme Court. The Supreme Court then ordered the Governor to hold a floor test by Wednesday. However, a day before the crucial floor test, Ajit Pawar and Fadnavis both resigned.

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