The Shiv Sena on Saturday accused the state BJP of trying to block Uddhav Thackeray's election to Legislative Council, but credited Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Amit Shah with avoiding political instability in Maharashtra.
The Sena-NCP-Congress government in the state was "Atmanirbhar" (self-reliant), said the Shiv Sena mouthpiece 'Saamana' in its editorial.
"Despite attempts to create hurdles in the functioning of the state government in the last six months, (chief minister) Uddhav Thackeray has been elected unopposed to the Legislative Council," the editorial said.
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In a veiled attack on Leader of Opposition in the Assembly Devendra Fadnavis, the editorial said attempts were made to put the government in a fix by blocking Thackeray's nomination to the Council through the governor's quota.
"Some people thought Thackeray (who had to get elected before the end of May) will have to resign, there would be President's rule and they could return by having an early morning swearing-in," it said.
After the Assembly election results last year, Fadnavis was sworn in as chief minister for a second time with NCP's Ajit Pawar as his deputy at an early morning ceremony, but the BJP leader had to resign for lack of numbers.
The editorial, interestingly, gave credit to the top BJP leadership for avoiding a political crisis in the state.
"Modi and (Union Home Minister) Amit Shah did not allow instability in the state. Not allowing the CM to get elected is good as political strategy. But to think of such politics when the state is fighting coronavirus is not good," it said.
"Modi and Shah had to inject vaccine to tackle this virus and the governor had to recommend holding of Council elections," it said.
Biennial elections to the Council -- postponed due to coronavirus -- were announced after Thackeray spoke to Modi over phone. The Sena chief and eight others were elected unopposed.
The coalition government in Maharashtra had had some anxious moments earlier as governor took no decision on the state cabinet's recommendation to nominate Thackeray to the upper house through the governor's quota.
The editorial also took a swipe at state BJP chief Chandrakant Patil for predicting a "political earthquake" in the state unit of the Congress, a ruling coalition partner.
"When the state is fighting coronavirus, Patil can do whatever it takes to bring down the government. Earlier they took Ajit Pawar (with them) but now Pawar is giving strength to the government. If the opposition is also 'Atmanirbhar' like the MVA (the ruling coalition), the fight against coronavirus will be stronger," it said.Follow our full coverage of the coronavirus pandemic here.