Eknath Shinde govt to seek 'vote of confidence' today

MUMBAI:  A day after winning its first significant legislative battle to secure the Speaker's position in the Maharashtra Legislative Assembly, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-backed government of Chief Minister Eknath Shinde will seek the crucial "vote of confidence" in the House, which is scheduled to take place here on Monday.

The Shinde-led government, which was sworn in on June 30 following the fall of the 31-month-old Maha Vikas Aghadi dictatorship, will get a vote of confidence on the second day of the two-day Special Session of the Assembly, which Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari called on July 3-4. 

With 166 MLAs on its side, including the BJP, the Shiv Sena's rebel group that broke away on June 20, and independent legislators from smaller parties, the ruling alliance has expressed confidence that it will easily win the House's trust. This number is enough to surpass the midway point of 145. (in the 288-member Lower House).

When BJP candidate and first-time legislator Rahul Narwekar was easily elected as Speaker of the House on Sunday, the government passed its first litmus test.

While Rajan Salvi, the MVA candidate, received only 107 of the 171 votes cast in the 288-member assembly, Narwekar, 45, received 164 votes.

After the Shiv Sena, Nationalist Congress Party, and Congress MVA government under Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray took office, Nana Patole, a representative of the Congress, was elected as the final Speaker. She was elected in late 2019 after the election.

However, Patole resigned from the position in February 2021 after being elected as the state Congress President, and Narhari Zirwal, the NCP's deputy speaker, has been in office ever since.

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