‘No match-fixing’, Maha CM Shinde on Jan 7 meeting with Speaker
Mumbai, Jan 10 (IANS) Hours ahead of the verdict on disqualification of Shiv Sena MLAs, Chief Minister Eknath Shinde asserted that there was “no match-fixing” in his meeting with Maharashtra Legislative Speaker Rahul Narwekar on January 7, here on Wednesday.
The CM said that the Speaker — who is also an MLA — had come to discuss some works pertaining to his constituency from where the Mumbai Coastal Road Project is passing.
“If it was intended to be a ‘match-fixing’ then the meeting would have taken place at night, but he came in broad daylight for the official meeting, in his official car. The Opposition parties are spreading lies as the sand is slipping from under their feet,” said Shinde, targeting the Maha Vikas Aghadi allies.
Leaders of the MVA alliance Congress, Shiv Sena (UBT) and Nationalist Congress Party (SP) have slammed the meeting between Shinde-Narwekar, and questioned the political ethics as it came barely three days before the crucial verdict on the disqualification of Shiv Sena MLAs, including the CM.
SS-UBT’s former CM Uddhav Thackeray, Sanjay Raut, Sushma Andhare and others have labelled the meeting as ‘the judge going to meet the accused before the ruling’, while NCP supremo Sharad Pawar also said that ‘such a meeting raises doubts in public minds’.
On his part, reacting to the accusing fingers, Shinde said it “was the misfortune of the state that a person who has been an ex-CM (Thackeray) was indulging in spreading such misinformation”.
“The Shiv Sena party is with me, even the Election Commission of India (ECI) has recognised it and given us the name and symbol. The Speaker’s verdict today will be in favour of the truth and that has unnerved the Opposition,” said Shinde to mediapersons.
As the state waits with bated breath for the ‘make-or-break’ ruling by the Speaker this afternoon, Shinde was closeted with the two Deputy CMs Devendra Fadnavis and Ajit Pawar on several occasions since Tuesday night and Wednesday.
Thackeray has expressed apprehensions over the verdict and the party has already filed an affidavit in the Supreme Court on Tuesday (January 9) raising strong objections to the Speaker-CM meeting.
Andhare said she has “zero enthusiasm” over the upcoming ruling, while Raut sarcastically said it’s a match-fixing and the verdict has already been dictated by Delhi and reading it out is a mere formality.
After the outcome, the party has also indicated it will challenge the Speaker’s verdict in the SC.