Not Just MLAs, MPs Too Join Anti-Uddhav Thackeray Camp

More than a dozen MPs are reportedly supporting rebel Eknath Shinde, who claims to have enough MLAs on his side to split the Shiv Sena and claim its leadership.

Not Just MLAs, MPs Too Join Anti-Uddhav Thackeray Camp

Some MPs have come out strongly in support of Uddhav Thackeray. (File)

Mumbai:

As most Shiv Sena MLAs deserted Uddhav Thackeray to cross over to the rebel camp led by Eknath Shinde, MPs too switched sides, leaving the powerful family at the core of the party virtually isolated.

More than a dozen MPs are reportedly supporting rebel Eknath Shinde, who claims to have enough MLAs on his side - he needs 37 - to split the Sena and claim leadership of the party founded by Bal Thackeray.

Rajan Vichare, the Shiv Sena MP from Thane; Bhavna Gawli, the MP from Washim; Krupal Tumane, the MP from Ramtek; Kalyan MP Shrikant Shinde; and Palghar MP Rajendra Gavit have sided with Mr Shinde.

Rajan Vichare and Shrikant Shinde are believed to be in Guwahati in Assam, where the rebels are camping in a five-star hotel.

Krupal Tumane this morning denied reports that he had joined the rebel group. "Patience is the need of the hour," he said.

The Shiv Sena has 55 MLAs in the assembly. Mr Shinde's camp claims the support of 40.

As for MPs, the Sena has 19 in Lok Sabha and three in Rajya Sabha.

Mr Tumane insisted he is still with the Shiv Sena.

"Nobody has contacted me, nor I have supported anyone. I am with the Shiv Sena only. Some information is being spread about me, which is absolutely incorrect. Keeping patience is the need of the hour," he told reporters.

Some MPs have come out strongly in support of Uddhav Thackeray. Besides Sanjay Raut, who has firmly rejected the possibility that Uddhav Thackeray's government is on the verge of collapse, Rajya Sabha member Priyanka Chaturvedi has said it is "time to fight" in a series of tweets.

"Shiv Sena functions like one big family, more about social bonding for larger good over its politics. Shiv Sainiks work for respect and honour. That principle has been broken by the engineering of those desperate for power. Hon. Party President has shared his heart out, time to fight," she wrote after Uddhav Thackeray's emotional speech last evening.

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