"Would Have Won 20-22 Seats In Maharashtra If...": Team Uddhav MP Sanjay Raut

Sanjay Raut dared the Shiv Sena led by Chief Minister Eknath Shinde to contest the assembly polls in October on a different name and symbol.

'Would Have Won 20-22 Seats In Maharashtra If...': Team Uddhav MP Sanjay Raut

Sanjay Raut said everything was snatched away from Shiv Sena led by Uddhav Thackeray (File)


Shiv Sena (UBT) leader Sanjay Raut said his party would have won 20 to 22 Lok Sabha seats alone in Maharashtra had its name and original symbol not been "snatched away" after the 2022 coup.

The party will approach the Supreme Court seeking a stay on the July 12 biennial elections to the Maharashtra Legislative Council as MLAs of ruling coalition parties Shiv Sena and the NCP who will vote in the polls face the prospect of disqualification, he said.

Sanjay Raut dared the Shiv Sena led by Chief Minister Eknath Shinde to contest the assembly polls in October on a different name and symbol.

"Everything was snatched away from us. The party's name, symbol, our MLAs, and MPs. Still, we put up a fight and got nine MPs elected. If we had the name and (original) symbol of our party, Shiv Sena (UBT) would have won 20-22 Lok Sabha seats," the Rajya Sabha member maintained.

Maharashtra has 48 Lok Sabha seats, the second highest after Uttar Pradesh (80).

After the 2022 split of the party founded by Bal Thackeray in 1966, the Election Commission allotted the Shiv Sena name and the original "bow and arrow" symbol to the faction led by Eknath Shinde.

The Shiv Sena (UBT) contested the Lok Sabha polls on a new symbol - the "flaming torch" - and won nine of the 21 seats it contested in Maharashtra. The Uddhav Thackeray-led outfit is a constituent of the opposition Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) along with the Congress and the NCP (SP). On the other hand, the Shinde-led Sena bagged seven seats.

Mr Raut referred to certain observations made by the Supreme Court while hearing the disqualification pleas related to MLAs of the ruling Shiv Sena and the Ajit Pawar-led NCP.

"In such circumstances when MLAs could be disqualified and the case is being heard in the Supreme Court, it will be unconstitutional for these lawmakers to elect MLCs. They (Sena and NCP MLAs) do not have any right to vote," he emphasised.

"We will mention in the Supreme Court that this (council) election is unconstitutional and illegal. Hence it must be stayed," Mr Raut said.

The Shiv Sena (UBT) approached the Supreme Court challenging the Maharashtra assembly Speaker Rahul Narwekar's decision to not disqualify its rebel MLAs who sided with Eknath Shinde.

The NCP suffered a split in July 2023 when its senior leader Ajit Pawar joined the Sena-BJP government along with eight other MLAs. Ajit Pawar is now a Deputy Chief Minister.

On Wednesday, Shiv Sena (UBT) chief Uddhav Thackeray said no poll should be held for 11 seats of the Legislative Council, where MLAs will be voting, till the Supreme Court rules on disqualification pleas related to some members of the lower house.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)