Rahul Narvekar, the son-in-law of senior NCP leader Ramraje Naik-Nimbalkar, a legislator from NCP and chairman and speaker of the Maharashtra legislative council is elected in a crucial election for speaker in Maharashtra Assembly. The election is very important in the context of the ongoing power struggle between two warring factions of Shiv Sena.
Ever since Nana Patole of Congress resigned in February 2021 to become his party’s state unit president, the post was lying vacant.
Narvekar won with over 160 votes in a headcount where Samajwadi Party (SP) abstained from voting. Both its MLAs Abu Azmi and Raees Shaikh kept sitting during the head count.
Narvekar’s name was proposed by Maharashtra State BJP President Chandrakant Patil. Narvekar whose brother Markand is also a corporator from Colaba is born and brought up in South Mumbai.
Aged 45, Rahul Narvekar was a spokesperson of the Youth Wing of Shiv Sena in his early years. He quit the party and joined NCP in 2014. Narvekar had claimed the inaccessibility of party top brass which prompted him to quit the Sena. He contested the 2014 Lok Sabha elections on an NCP ticket for maval seat but lost to Shrirang Appa Barne of the Shiv Sena.
Narvekar joined the BJP before the 2019 Maharashtra assembly polls from Colaba. He won the assembly elections from Colaba, defeating Congress’ Ashok Jagtap.
The defection of almost entire flock of MLA of Shiv Sena led by new Chief Mininster of Maharashtra Eknath shinde to claim being the rightful inheritant of the legacy of Shiv Sena founder Balasaheb Thackeray over his son and present Shiv Sena Chief uddhav Thackeray is a story of political folklore destined to be immortal.
In this context, the election of BJP MLA and a family member of NCP stalwart gains importance. Shiv Sena which had fought the election being in alliance with BJP had ditched them to form Maha Vikas Aghadi – an allaince with NCP and Indian National Congress. The Siv Sena claimed that BJP did not want to honour their commitment of allowing Shiv Sena Chief ministership in case of a win.
Now the rebel group of Shiv Sena is siding with BJP which has in an unusual move, consented the leader of rebel group to become Chief Minister.
MLAs of Shinde faction returned to Mumbai from Goa where they were stationed after a few days at Guwahati as a special two-day session of the state legislature to see election for the post of Assembly Speaker as well as a floor test of the new government is convened.