Eknath Shinde has reversed Uddhav Thackeray’s government decision on the controversial Mumbai Metro carriage shed project, sources said. The decision comes just hours after he was sworn in as Chief Minister of Maharashtra, which comes as a surprise.
Here are the top 10 updates to this great story:
- Mr Shinde has ordered Advocate General Ashutosh Kumbhakoni to plead in court that the subway car shed will be built as planned in 2019 under Devendra Fadnavis’ government in Aarey Colony. Last year, opposition leader Mr Fadnavis moving the project to Kanjurmarg resulted in a significant delay in completing the work and overspending.
- A two-day special session of the Maharashtra Legislature will be held from July 2 during which a new speaker will be elected, sources said. Mr Shinde has since returned to Goa, where the rebellious MLAs are camping.
- BJP’s Devendra Fadnavis, who was widely expected to take over the top job, took his oath as deputy prime minister just under three hours after saying he would “stay out of the government and make sure it runs smoothly”.
- Devendra Fadnavis has shown a “big heart” and the decision reflects his true commitment and attitude to service to Maharashtra, Interior Minister Amit Shah said, announcing that Mr Shinde would have the BJP’s full support.
- Eknath Shinde thanked Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Mr Fadnavis and other BJP leaders. “It’s her magnanimity. They had a bigger mandate, but they made me chief minister. he said.
- Mr Fadnavis could not have “happily” accepted the number two position, veteran politician Sharad Pawar, who heads the Nationalist Congress Party, which was part of Uddhav Thackeray’s government, was quoted as saying by the ANI news agency.
- Mr Shinde, 58, was sworn in at the Raj Bhavan in Mumbai less than 24 hours after Uddhav Thackeray resigned as prime minister of the 31-month-old Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government.
- Uddhav Thackeray’s resignation on Wednesday came days after Mr Shinde led a rebellion involving at least 39 Shiv Sena MLAs, which claimed Mr Thakeray had ignored Shiv Sena MLAs’ demand that the alliance with Congress and the NCP should be ended.
- “Shiv Sena has chosen to form an alliance with those whom Balasaheb has protested all his life. Shiv Sena insulted the people’s mandate,” Mr Fadnavis said.
- Mr Shinde, who was a senior minister in Thackay’s government, said he made the decision with support from 50 MLAs for the state’s development and “there was no personal interest”. When 50 MLAs make a decision, it requires self-examination, he said, without naming Uddhav Thackeray.