Mumbai (Maharashtra) [India], June 25 (ANI): As the battle to claim the legacy of Bal Thackeray intensified with Eknath Shinde-led rebel MLAs naming their group as 'Shiv Sena Balasaheb', Uddhav Thackeray-led Shiv Sena on Saturday passed a resolution to take legal action against them and said that those who left the party should not seek votes in the name of the party founder.
As many as six resolutions were passed during Shiv Sena's national executive committee meeting on Saturday as the political stalemate did not seem to end leading to uncertainty over the future of the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government.
Addressing the media after the meeting, Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut said, "We have passed 6 resolutions and have decided Shiv Sena will follow the Hindutva ideology of Balasaheb Thackeray and won't compromise with the ideology of a united Maharashtra.""Strict action will be taken against those who have betrayed the party. CM Thackeray has the authority to take action against those who left. We will take legal action against those who have used Balasaheb Thackeray's name for their self-centred politics. Those who have left can't use our patriarch's name," he added.
Quoting the Chief Minister's statement during the meeting, Raut said that the leaders who have left the party should ask for votes in the name of their fathers and warned them of using the names of Shiv Sena and Bal Thackeray.
"CM Uddhav Thackeray has said that the leaders who have left Shiv Sena should not ask for votes in the name of Shiv Sena and Balasaheb Thackeray. Ask for votes in the name of your father. Maha Vikas Aghadi is united," Raut said.
"People will come to know what actions will be taken against those who have left the party by the evening. The work that CM Uddhav Thackeray has done is commendable. We will all fight the elections under his leadership," he added.
Born on 23 January 1926, Balasaheb left his job as a cartoonist in a daily newspaper in 1960 and founded Shiv Sena on June 19, 1966, to advocate for the interest of Marathis or the people of Maharashtra. He passed away on November 17, 2012, after suffering a cardiac arrest at the age of 86.
Eknath Shinde claims to have the support of 38 MLAs of the 56 Shiv Sena legislators, which is more than two-thirds of the party's strength in the 288-member Maharashtra Legislative Assembly. It means that they can either leave and form another political party or merge with another without being disqualified from the state assembly.
According to the Tenth Schedule of the Constitution, which deals with the anti-defection law, any group of lawmakers can leave a party and form another or merge with another party without disqualification if they are together at least two-thirds of legislators of the party's original strength.
Meanwhile, rebel Shiv Sena MLA Deepak Kesarkar claimed that their faction has two-thirds majority while denying merger talks with any party.
"We are still in Shiv Sena, there is a misunderstanding that we have left the party. We have just separated our faction. We have the two-thirds majority to follow the path we wanted. Our new leader is chosen by the majority. They didn't have more than 16-17 MLAs," Kesarkar said.
"There's no need to merge, our faction will be given different recognition and we aren't merging with any other party. Recognition should be given to our faction, if it isn't given, we will go to court and prove our existence and numbers. We have numbers, but we respect CM Uddhav Thackeray, we won't speak against him. We must follow the path on which we fought Assembly elections," he added.
Notably, Eknath Shinde was unanimously elected as the leader of the faction recently which is revolting against the Uddhav faction.
The Uddhav Thackeray faction recently submitted a plea before the Maharashtra Assembly deputy speaker to disqualify 12 rebel MLAs.
As rebels continue to camp in Guwahati, some of their offices were vandalised allegedly by Shiv Sena workers in Maharashtra.
Following this, Shinde on Saturday wrote to Uddhav Thackeray over the alleged 'malicious' withdrawal of security of family members of the 38 MLAs camping with him in the Guwahati hotel.
In his letter to Thackeray and State Home Minister Dilip Walse Patil, Shinde claimed that the security provided to the MLAs at their residence as well as to their family members as per the protocol has been illegally and unlawfully withdrawn, as an act of revenge.
"Needless to mention, this sinister move is another attempt to break our resolve and arm-twist us to give in to the demands of the Maha Vikas Aghadi government comprising of Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) and Congress goons," he said.
Eknath Shinde faction, earlier on Friday, gave notice of a no-confidence motion against Deputy Speaker Narhari Jhirwal after the Uddhav Thackeray faction submitted a plea before the deputy speaker to disqualify 12 rebel MLAs. (ANI)