Governor invites Devendra Fadnavis to form government

Updated: Nov 10, 2019, 06:45 IST | Dharmendra Jore | Mumbai

A whole 15 days after results were announced, Maharashtra Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari begins formal procedure even as Shiv Sena-BJP stand-off over CM's post continues

Devendra Fadnavis at BJP HQ on Saturday. Pic /Ashish Raje
Devendra Fadnavis at BJP HQ on Saturday. Pic /Ashish Raje

Maharashtra Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari has asked Devendra Fadnavis, the leader of the single largest party, to indicate the BJP's willingness and ability to form the government. 

The governor has invited the BJP as opposed to the pre-poll alliance of BJP and Sena, due to the impasse between the ruling parties. 

The invitation means that the BJP would have to prove a majority of 145 MLAs on the floor of the House, if it accepts the invite, in the time stipulated by the governor. The BJP can prove adequate strength only with the help of Shiv Sena.

Insiders said efforts were being made to end the deadlock. The BJP and Sena were talking via senior members even as the latter is adamant on having the CM's post. Fadnavis may turn down the governor's invite if he cannot get the numbers.

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Devendra Fadnavis and Chandrakant Patil at a press conference at Churchgate on Saturday. Pic/Ashish Raje

The BJP has 105 MLAs and the Sena 56. Both have independents supporting them. If the BJP doesn't accept the governor's offer, the second-largest party—Sena—will be invited. It will be interesting to see if the Sena accepts it and gets the numbers by forming a new axis with the NCP and the Congress. If this too doesn't happen, the governor may recommend President's rule.

Raj Bhavan said in a statement that despite the passage of 15 days after the results, no single party or alliance of parties has come forward to form the government. "The Governor, therefore, today asked the leader of the elected members of the single largest party, that is BJP, to convey its willingness and ability to form the government."

Senior BJP leader Sudhir Mungantiwar said the party will decide on the invitation at its core meeting
on Sunday.

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