Assam Minister Ashok Singhal visited the luxury hotel in Guwahati, where dissident Shiv Sena leader Eknath Shinde camps with other MLAs from Maharashtra, and held a discussion with them, sources said on Sunday.
A source close to the development told PTI that Assam’s housing and urban affairs department went to the hotel late Saturday night and held talks with Shinde and the other rebel MLAs.
However, it is not immediately known what Singhal discussed with the rebellious Shiv Sena lawmakers and independent MLAs from the western state.
When contacted, Singhal confirmed he had gone to the hotel but declined to share details.
However, a close associate of the minister told PTI, “He went there to meet an MLA he knew. He was there for a while and had a cup of tea.” Tellingly, the meeting took place just hours after 16 dissident MLAs were sent disqualifications.
The BJP, which once had an alliance with the Shiv Sena, has so far wiped its hands of the current political turmoil in Maharashtra.
Despite sending a party MP and an MLA to receive lawmakers at the Lokpriya Gopinath Bordoloi International (LGBI) airport in Guwahati on June 22, Assam’s chief minister, Himanta Biswa Sarma, claimed that dissidents were traveling as guests single-handedly to the state. came.
Assam Police have taken over security from the hotel’s private guards and are not allowing anyone to enter the premises.
The Maharashtra Legislature Secretariat issued a “subpoena” on Saturday to 16 of Shiv Sena’s rebel MLAs, including Shinde, requesting that they respond in writing to complaints requesting their disqualification by the evening of June 27. .
After receiving the subpoena, the Shiv Sena MLAs have been meeting at the hotel since Sunday morning, sources said.
“They are discussing various options for responding to the messages. The current political situation will be discussed during the meeting,” the source said.
In what appears to be an apparent attempt to overthrow the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government in Maharashtra, dissident lawmakers from Shiv Sena, who leads the ruling coalition, are camping in Guwahati, about 2,700 km away.