The Maharashtra Congress on Thursday frowned at its ally, Shiv Sena (UBT), for making snide remarks on the turmoil within the party, terming it as ‘inappropriate and ‘uncalled for’.
Commenting editorially on the current crisis in the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MV) constituent, the Sena’s (UBT) newspapers, ‘Saamana’ and ‘Dopahar Ka Saamana’, seemed to bash state Congress President Nana Patole in the face-off with another senior leader Vijay Balasaheb Thorat, who recently quit as the Congress Legislature Party (CLP) Leader.
Among other things, the edits suggested that Patole’s decision to quit as Assembly Speaker (in February 2021) was ‘hasty’, which ultimately led to a series of crises culminating in the fall of the MVA government last year.
In a sharp rebuke, Congress spokesperson Atul Londhe said that there is a well-established decision-making process in the Congress and all major decisions taken by the party President are respected and implemented by all.
On the resignation of Patole as Speaker after he was named as the state party chief, Londhe said: “It was the decision of the (then) party President Sonia Gandhi in the overall interest after considering the prevalent political situation.”
Slamming the Sena (UBT), Londhe said there is no sense in the contentions that Patole’s resignation as Speaker triggered a chain of events that could have been avoided.
“Such ‘if-then’ has no meaning in politics… It is wrong to say that Patole’s quitting the Speaker’s post was the sole cause for the MVA’s woes, there may be other reasons behind it,” Londhe hinted without detailing.
He reiterated that all decisions taken by the Congress are its internal matter and the Sena (UBT) must respect them while adhering to the principles of alliance politics.
The Saamana group’s edits argued that the main reason for the collapse of the MVA government headed by then CM Uddhav Thackeray in June 2022 “was Patole’s hasty and unwise resignation as Assembly Speaker from where the entire crisis started”.
“If Patole had continued in his post, many problems could have been avoided and it would have been easy to disqualify those who changed parties… After Patole’s resignation, the Governor did not permit holding election for the crucial post, which went in favour of the ‘Khokha’ (boxes, a slang for crores of rupees), and their ‘superpower’ in New Delhi,” read the edits.
The Sena (UBT) rued that after the success of Rahul Gandhi’s Bharat Jodo Yatra, the Congress is in a revival mode in many states, but the opposite is happening in Maharashtra owing to egos which would be detrimental to the party’s interests.