Revenge served cold: how a two-year-old speech by Devendra Fadnavis has come back to haunt Uddhav Thackeray

With Uddhav Thackeray stepping down as chief minister of Maharashtra after being outnumbered by an uprising in his own party and knowing he will not be able to prove majority on the floor of the Assembly, the decks are being cleared for the Devendra Fadnavis led BJP to return to power after 31 months.

When Thackeray stepped down on Wednesday night, the saffron camp was full of celebrations as Fadnavis returned as CM with rebel leader Eknath Shinde as his deputy.

Fadnavis resigned as CM on November 26, 2019, barely 80 hours after being sworn in for the second time. He was sworn in in a silent morning ceremony on November 23 with the support of Ajit Pawar, who then headed the 54-strong NCP. However, Pawar quickly resigned after personal reasons.

The dramatic turn of events eventually paved the way for Shiv Sena to form a government in alliance with the Sharad Pawar-led NCP and Congress.

31 months later, as Fadnavis is on the brink of returning to power, a verse he recited at the December 1 special session of the state assembly following his resignation has now gone viral.

After Nana Patole was elected as Speaker of the Legislative Assembly of Maharashtra, Fadnavis had said: “Mera paani utarta dekh mere kinare par ghar mat basa lena, main samandar hoon wapas lautkar aaunga”.

The verse implies that Fadnavis did not expect the turn of events and that he was angry about giving up the CM post after being sworn in just three days. He had vowed to return to power, which is now apparent when he is believed to have played a pivotal role in the collapse of the coalition alliance.

Notably, the former CM’s wife, Amruta Fadnavis, also tweeted a verse after her husband stepped down as prime minister. †Palat ke aaungi shaakhon pe khushbuyein le kar, khizan ki zad mein hoon mausam zara badalne de,” she had tweeted on Nov. 26, 2019.

The verse apparently referred to Fadnavis’ departure with his wife radiating confidence that he will make a comeback in power with the change of time.

To signal that the decks will be cleared for a changing of the guards following Thackeray’s resignation, the Maharashtra BJP tweeted on Wednesday a video clip of a speech in Marathi by Fadnavis. The accompanying caption, also in Marathi, read: “I will come back. For the creation of a new Maharashtra! Jai Maharashtra”.

With the support of 39 rebel MLAs and some Independents and smaller party lawmakers, the BJP – which currently has a strength of 106 MLAs in the House – is in a safe position to lay claim to forming a government in the House. state assembly, where the majority stands at 144.

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