With 46 MLAs resigning, the new majority mark in the House will be 121.
The Uddhav Thackeray government in Maharashtra appears to be in trouble after minister and rebel Sena leader Eknath Shinde claimed the support of 46 MLAs this morning in an exclusive interview to NDTV after taking a 2.30 am flight to BJP-ruled Assam.
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The total strength of the Maharashtra Assembly is 288. With two legislators in jail and one dead, the number is down to 285. This means the majority mark in the Assembly, in the event of a trust vote, is now 143.
The Maha Vikas Aghadi government of the Sena, Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) and the Congress currently have 152 legislators.
The Sena has 55 MLAs. 40 MLAs out of them and six Independent are learnt to be holed up in the Guwahati hotel. If these MLAs led by minister Eknath Shinde resign, the Sena's number comes down to 15. Eknath Shinde needs the support of at least 37 MLAs to protect from the anti-defection law.
With the support of two-thirds of Sena MLAs, the rebels can be recognised as a separate party in the assembly. Rebels led by Mr Shinde can also stake claim for Shiv Sena's symbol before the Election Commission.
Election Commission, the adjudicating body for disputes in a political party, recognises a faction as the party based on the majority support of legislators and office bearers. The faction that enjoys majority support is given the party symbol.
This would bring down the Maha Vikas Aghadi's strength in the House to 112. With 46 MLAs resigning, the new majority mark in the House will be 121.
The BJP is now claiming the support of more than the majority mark. But If these 40 Sena MLAs try to switch over, they will need to resign under the anti-defection law and get elected back in bypolls.
Chandrababu Naidu had rebelled against NT Rama Rao and captured the Telugu Desam Party and the state government in 1995.
O Panneerselvam had rebelled against V K Sasikala, after which the poll body froze the symbol of ADMK in 2017.
Most recently, Pashupati Kumar Paras rebelled against Chirag Paswan and captured the Lok Janshakti Party in 2021.