Uddhav Thackeray to be sworn in as Chief Minister today

Mumbai: Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray will take oath as Chief Minister of Maharashtra this evening at the Shivaji Park here. With the swearing-in of 59-year-old Thackeray, the State will have a Chief Minister from the Sena after 20 years.

The oath taking ceremony will be held at the sprawling Shivaji Park, where his father and Sena founder Bal Thackeray addressed his famous Dussehra rallies.

The last Sena man to occupy the Chief Minister’s chair was Narayan Rane in 1999, after Manohar Joshi, who in 1995 became the first Chief Minister from the party.

The swearing-in ceremony follows days of dramatic political developments, which included a three-day government formed by an unexpected support from NCP leader Ajit Pawar, who has since returned to the Sharad Pawar-led party fold.

The Sena, along with the NCP and Congress constituted the ”Maha Vikas Aghadi” to form a non-BJP government in the State.┬áThere is speculation that Ajit Pawar may be inducted into the new Cabinet.

NCP leader Praful Patel on Wednesday said his party will get the Deputy Chief Minister’s post in the new Shiv Sena-led government.

The Congress will get the Assembly Speaker’s post while the NCP will get deputy Speaker’s post, he said after a meeting of the ”Maha Vikas Aghadi”.

He also said that alongwith Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray, one or two members of each of the three parties will take oath as Ministers. There will be only one Deputy Chief Minister’s post in the government, he added.

A special session of the 14th state Assembly was held here on Wednesday where oath was administered to 285 newly-elected members by pro tem Speaker Kalidas Kolambkar.

Legislature secretary Rajendra Bhagwat said a decision on the date for Speaker’s election will be taken after the Cabinet meeting, following the swearing-in of Uddhav Thackeray as Chief Minister.