Sonia holds meeting with Congress MPs from poll-bound Punjab

Express News Service

NEW DELHI: Days after the Maha Vikas Aghadi government, of which Congress is a part, failed to resolve the stalemate over appointment of the Assembly speaker, Congress president Sonia Gandhi has sought a report from the Maharashtra unit.

The Speaker’s post is vacant since the resignation of Nana Patole from the post early last year. Patole is the current state Congress chief. As per the understanding of the MVA constituents — Shiv Sena, NCP and Congress — the Speaker’s post went to Congress. Ministerial berths and other posts were divided among them.

In the previous monsoon session of the Assembly too, the Speaker election could not take place. This time, when the alliance partners amended the rules to elect the Speaker, Governor Bhagat Singh Koshayri disagreed, saying the process was unconstitutional. 

“Had the alliance partners gone ahead with the Speaker’s election, the Governor might have used this as a constitutional crisis in the state and imposed President’s rule,” said a senior Congress leader.

“Therefore, senior MVA leaders decided not to put the Uddhav Thackeray government in trouble over the Speaker’s post.”

He said Sonia has inputs tooffer. “She is very particular about the share of the party in the government as well as the representation of backward classes in the government. She wants to know the reason why the Speaker’s election had to be postponed. The report will be submitted to the party leadership,” said the Congress leader.