Hours ahead of the Supreme Court's decision on Maharashtra political crisis, the NCP-Congress-Shiv Sena on Monday sought to prove majority outside the Assembly by parading 162 Maharashtra MLAs in front of the public. The three parties ,who were outsmarted by the BJP by forming a government while they were about to finalise their alliance, proved outside the house that the majority of MLAs are with them and not the BJP.
Speaking after their show of strength, senior NCP leader Nawab Malik issued a stern warning to the BJP, saying that if the saffron party tried to poach their MLAs before the floor test, they will make sure the BJP suffer. "I want to tell the BJP that as many as 70 of our leaders had joined the BJP over the last 5 years. On one direction from Pawar Saheb and the BJP will be emptied," Malki told reporters today.
Locked in a protracted power tussle with the BJP in Maharashtra, the 'Maha Vikas Aghadi' of the Shiv Sena, NCP and Congress "paraded" 162 MLAs in a Mumbai five-star hotel on Monday evening in a show of united strength. During the show of strength, the MLAs of Shiv Sena, NCP and Congress also took an oath to remain honest with the alliance.
Addressing the MLAs during the "parade", NCP chief Sharad Pawar challenged the BJP that he will bring more than 162 MLAs for the floor test the state is Maharashtra and not Goa. "There will not be any problem in proving our majority. The one who is suspended from the party cannot give any orders. On the day of the floor test, I will bring more than 162 MLAs. This is not Goa, This is Maharashtra," the NCP chief said.
Speaking at a joint parade of MLAs of the three parties, Shiv Sena president Udhhav Thackeray asked the BJP to "make way" for the Sena-NCP-Congress alliance to rule Maharashtra. He also accused the former ally of misusing power to form government in states where they were not given mandate.
Those present at the parade also included former Maharashtra chief minister Ashok Chavan and senior Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge. "We are more than 162, not just 162. We all will be a part of the government. I thank Sonia Gandhi who allowed for this alliance to stop BJP," Chavan said during the parade.
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