Shiv Sena springs surprise with notice for no-trust motion

The Shiv Sena has sprung a surprise by submitting a proposal for a no-confidence motion against the Democratic Front government led by Prithviraj Chavan of the Congress. Shiv Sena has raised 10 points against the government to justify the move.

Udhav Thackeray

While the proposal for the motion left political circles puzzled as leaders of the saffron party are known to share an excellent equation with Chavan despite ideological differences with his party, Democratic Front ministers termed the move pressure tactics to ensure the government bowed to Shiv Sena demands for a memorial to departed party patriarch Bal Thackeray.

Chief Minister, Prithviraj Chavan
Friendly equations: Since becoming the Chief Minister, Prithviraj Chavan has had several meetings with the Thackerays, thrashing out various issues, including support for Pranab Mukherjee as president. File pics

The notice bears the signatures of 29 MLAs and was handed over two-three days ago at the state legislature secretariat camp office in Nagpur, the second capital of the state. The motion may come up for discussion in the first week of the Winter Session of the state legislature scheduled to begin on December 10 in Nagpur.

“We don’t know whether the Sena will press for such a motion, but the move is unexpected given the kind of relationship the Thackerays enjoy with CM Prithviraj Chavan,” a senior minister from the Democratic Front government said.

An indicator of the goodwill between Chavan and the Shiv Sena top brass is provided by the fact that since he became the chief minister, Chavan has held several meetings with the Thackerays and other top Shiv Sena leaders to amicably thrash out various issues, including support for Pranab Mukherjee when he was running for president.

BJP not involved
While political circles are busy discussing the move by the saffron party and the motive behind it, according to leaders from the Democratic Front the Shiv Sena knows building a memorial to Bal Thackeray, who died on November 17, may not be a walk in the park and is trying to use the threat of a no-confidence motion to get what it wants. They said it was significant that the notice for no-confidence motion was given by the Shiv Sena alone and its ally BJP was not made a party to it.

“They (Shiv Sena leaders) are convinced now that it is not going to be easy to erect a memorial at Shivaji Park given the legal issues and restrictions on the usage of the ground,” a Democratic Front leader said. “But the party may ask for a suitable plot for the proposed memorial and this might explain the developments.”

Shiv Sena group leader in the assembly Subhash Desai said the no-confidence motion against the DF government was very much on the cards.

“We are going to press for a debate in the coming Winter Session,” he said.

As per the rules, the notice will have to be introduced on the floor of the house by the Shiv Sena, which will have to ensure the presence of the 29 signatories to it. A debate will follow immediately, to which the CM will need to offer his reply on behalf of the government. 

Sena chargesheet
The notice given by the Shiv Sena has listed the following 10 points for bringing the no-confidence motion.
>> Cases of land-grab that have surfaced as a major issue in recent times
>> The current scenario in the state irrigation sector
>> The huge properties amassed by Water Resources Minister Sunil Tatkare in Raigad district
>> The decision by PWD Minister Chhagan Bhujbal to allot 70 lakh square metres of land for redevelopment under BOT
>> Government not heeding demands for water supply in Marathwada and releasing adequate water for Jaikwadi project
>> The current scenario in state industrial sector and shutting down of industries
>> A scam involving a former social justice minister that involves state government funds of Rs 450 crore
>> Lack of coordination between the ruling alliance and impact on governance
>> Lack of responsibility at the administrative level in the state
>> The law and order situation in the state  

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