On Sunday, December 8, former Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and former Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar were seen together on a public platform for the first time since the fall of their 80-hour government in Maharashtra. They shared the stage at the marriage ceremony of Independent MLA Sanjay Shinde’s daughter in Solapur, Maharashtra. As per the sources, both were seen candidly talking to each other for more than 20 minutes. Pawar is one of the leading contenders to become the Deputy CM in the Maha Vikas Aghadi government.
Since none of the major political parties could garner enough numbers for government formation after the Assembly elections, President's Rule was imposed in Maharashtra on November 12. Hectic parlays had been going on in the NCP, Shiv Sena, and Congress camps to forge a post-poll alliance in the State. Sources also indicated that a formula had been worked out whereby the Sena would get the CM’s post for five years. On Wednesday, November 20, Congress President reportedly gave the green signal for the formation of an alliance with Shiv Sena. Two days later, NCP chief Sharad Pawar publicly declared that Uddhav Thackeray would become the next Maharashtra CM. However, in a sudden development, Devendra Fadnavis and Ajit Pawar took oath as the CM and Deputy CM of Maharashtra respectively on November 23.
While the BJP claimed that the entire NCP legislative party had consented to be a part of the government, the NCP supremo made it clear that he did not endorse the decision of Ajit Pawar. The grand show of strength by the 162 MLAs of Sena, NCP, and Congress at a hotel in Mumbai sought to push the BJP on the backfoot. But the real clincher was the Supreme Court’s order directing an immediate floor test paving way for the resignation of Fadnavis and Ajit Pawar on November 26. Subsequently, Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray was sworn in as the Maharashtra CM in front of thousands of people at Shivaji Park in Mumbai.