New Delhi [India], May 27 (ANI): Amid reports of friction in the Maha Vikas Aghadi in Maharashtra, state Assembly Speaker Nana Patole on Wednesday said there is no such "emergency" or "political situation" and "that the situation in Maharashtra is not against the current government".
"Whatever is being said in the media over Maharashtra political situation, there is no such situation in the state. At this time, we are only working towards fighting COVID-19. We are following all guidelines of the Government of India," Patole told ANI in Delhi.
Patole, while indicating that there was nothing out of the ordinary regarding today's Maha Vikas Aghadi meeting, said, "Alliance governments need 'samanvayata' (coordination) to implement its agenda... There is no such emergency, they may be holding talks over COVID-19. I don't know as I am not part of their Cabinet".
The Maharashtra Assembly Speaker is in the national capital for a meeting with Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla. Patole is a senior Congress leader from the state, who took over the office of Speaker.
Maharashtra Chief Minister and Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray is holding a meeting with alliance partners in Mumbai today. The Maha Vikas Aghadi government of Shiv Sena-Congress-NCP was formed in November last year after the BJP failed to prove his majority in the State Assembly.
With as many as 54,758 positive cases of COVID-19, Maharashtra is currently is the worst coronavirus affected state in the country.
The comments of Patole came a day after Congress leader Rahul Gandhi distanced his party from Maharashtra government, saying his party was only supporting the government and was not actually the decision-maker.
"I would like to make a differentiation here, we are supporting the government in Maharashtra but we are not the key decision-makers in Maharashtra. We are the key decision-maker in Punjab, in Chhattisgarh, Rajasthan and Puducherry. So there is a difference between running a government and supporting a government," Rahul Gandhi had said.
Reacting to the comments of Gandhi, the Maharashtra Speaker said, "Rahul also said that our governments are there in Chhattisgarh and Rajasthan, and we are making decisions to fight this (COVID-19). Here (in Maharashtra), we cannot take decisions on our own as we are in a coalition (with Shiv Sena and NCP)."
"Being the Speaker, I do not want to get into their political arrangement. However, I can categorically state that the situation in Maharashtra is not against the current government," he added.
Patole further suggested that the state government and Opposition should work together as "this is the time to fight against COVID-19 and to save people's lives."
He stated that it was a time to fight COVID-19 unitedly. (ANI)