Mumbai: Eknath Shinde, the rebel leader of the Shiv Sena, was named the next chief minister of Maharashtra by the BJP in an unexpected decision that is being hailed as a political masterstroke.
Shinde and BJP leader Devendra Fadnavis took their oaths as chief minister and deputy chief minister, respectively, during a ceremony on Thursday night at Raj Bhavan.
The fact that Fadnavis was appointed as a deputy chief minister was also unexpected because he had previously said that he would not serve in the government but rather provide help from outside. However, J.P. Nadda, the national president of the BJP, later announced that Fadnavis would be the deputy chief minister in the Shinde-led government.
Uddhav Thackeray resigned as Maharashtra's chief minister on Wednesday, immediately after the Supreme Court declared that he must demonstrate his majority in the floor test. This led to the formation of a new administration in Maharashtra. He will be the first chief minister from Mumbai's neighboring Thane city and the fourth Shiv Sena chief minister following Manohar Joshi, Narayan Rane, and Thackeray.
For appointing him as chief minister, Shinde congratulated Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Union Home Minister Amit Shah, JP Nadda, and Fadnavis. "Fadnavis offered me the position of CM despite the fact that I had the support of 120 MLAs. He could have kept the CM position to himself if he had so desired "he added.