- Shiv Sena (Eknath Shinde faction)-BJP government is set to face the floor test today
- A special two-day session of the Maharashtra Legislative Assembly is in place for floor test
- On first day of special session, Rahul Narvekar of BJP was elected Speaker, youngest ever in country
Maharashtra Floor Test: The four-day-old Shiv Sena-BJP government will face the floor test on July 4 (today) during the special two-day session of the Legislative Assembly which began on Sunday. On the first day of the special assembly session, Rahul Narvekar of the BJP was elected Speaker of the Maharashtra Assembly. Narvekar, who polled 164 votes, defeated Uddhav Thackeray-led Shiv Sena candidate Rajan Salvi, who got 107 votes. The Speaker's post was lying vacant since February last year after Nana Patole of the Congress resigned. Narvekar (45) is the youngest ever Assembly Speaker in the country, Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis said. His father-in-law Ramraje Naik of NCP is the chairperson of the Legislative Council. The BJP-Shiv Sena (Eknath Shinde) government held office on Thursday after Eknath Shinde and Devendra Fadnavis took as Chief Minister and Deputy Chief Minister, a day after Uddhav Thackeray resigned as CM.
- Reacting to Shiv Sena President Uddhav Thackeray's statement that a 'deserter cannot be a Shiv Sena CM', Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde earlier said that he has the support of more than two-third Sena MLAs and hence they (Shiv Sena rebels and the BJP) will easily win the floor test.
- Thackeray had said that a person who has sidelined the Sena cannot be called a 'Shiv Sainik' CM.
- Also, in a big blow to Uddhav Thackeray, Eknath Shinde was elected as legislative party leader of the Shiv Sena while Bharat Gogwale as the chief whip.
- "We have enough support... We will easily win the floor test and even the Speaker's election. There is no doubt in it and there is nothing to worry about. The picture is very clear," Shinde said.
- "We have enough numbers and are working as the Shiv Sena legislative party. We are committed towards the development of Maharashtra. We are the Shiv Sainiks of Balasaheb and we are taking ahead his Hindutva agenda. All the pending projects in Maharashtra shall be completed now," he said.
- As many as 50 MLAs who support Shinde, including 39 rebel legislators of the Shiv Sena, on Saturday evening flew to Mumbai from Goa by a chartered flight. Shinde, who had flown to Goa in the morning, accompanied them back.
- Shinde has the support of 10 legislators of smaller parties and independents and 106 MLAs of the BJP in the 288-member House.
- Following is the party position in the Assembly: Shiv Sena 55, NCP 53, Congress 44, BJP 106, Bahujan Vikas Aghadi 3, Samajwadi Party 2, AIMIM 2, Prahar Janshakti Party 2, MNS 1, CPI (M) 1, PWP 1, Swambhimani Paksha 1, Rashtriya Samaj Paksha 1, Jansurajya Shakti Party 1, Krantikari Shetkari Party 1, and Independents 13.
- There is a vacancy due to the death of Shiv Sena MLA Ramesh Latke last month.
- Two NCP members - Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar and Food and Civil Supplies Minister Chhagan Bhujbal - have tested COVID-19 positive, while two other party legislators - Anil Deshmukh and Nawab Malik - are currently in jail.