In an astonishing claim, Maharashtra BJP president Chandrakant Patil asserted that the current situation was a fit case for the imposition of President's Rule in the state. Addressing the media on Monday, he accused the Uddhav Thackeray-led government of undermining Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari's authority as the constitutional head of Maharashtra. Contrasting the late Indira Gandhi's track record to that of PM Modi, Patil claimed that the latter was against the idea of President's Rule as he believes in democratic principles.
Chandrakant Patil remarked, "The constitutional head of any state is the Governor. If the Governor decides that I will not administer the oath to a person as the CM, then the CM cannot say that you step aside and we will get the oath administered through someone like Diwakar Raote. You can't do something like this. He has to administer the oath to the judges of the state, women's commission head and everyone else. When the Governor intimates the date of the election of the Assembly Speaker, you have to do so on the same day. You have not done so on three occasions."
"To be frank, a series of events have taken place to (justify) the imposition of the President's Rule. You are insulting the Constitution by disregarding the Governor's message. You are insulting the state's constitutional head. But Modi Ji's stance is that struggle if you don't agree with an elected government. Indira Gandhi imposed President's Rule 19 times. He doesn't follow this. Otherwise, enough reasons are there for imposing President's Rule," the BJP leader added.
Penning an editorial in Shiv Sena mouthpiece Saamana on Wednesday, Rajya Sabha MP Sanjay Raut mocked Patil's assertion. He quipped, "When anything happens, they (BJP leaders) threaten to impose President's Rule. It is as if the country's constitutional head is sitting at home with a rubber stamp".
Hitting out at BJP further, Raut remarked, "Who is instructing the Governor to reject the decisions and recommendations of a popular government? You cannot backstab a popular government by firing from the Governor's shoulder. The history of Shiv Sena is of fighting from the front. The word 'treachery' does not exist in Shiv Sena's dictionary".
In the article, he also weighed in on Union Home Minister Amit Shah's recent challenge to Maharashtra CM Uddhav Thackeray to resign and come back to power by contesting polls. The Sena spokesperson opined, "If he was not the Home Minister and he didn't have the weapons like CBI, ED, Income Tax, NCB, he couldn't have made these statements". Despite winning a comfortable majority of its own in the 2019 Maharashtra polls, NDA could not form the government over Shiv Sena's demand for the rotational CM post. Ultimately, the latter joined hands with NCP and Congress to form the government.