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"Gave my judgment according to Supreme Court order": Maharashtra Assembly Speaker after ruling in favour of Shinde Sena

Mumbai: Days after ruling that the Eknath Shinde faction was the 'real' Shiv Sena, Maharashtra Assembly Speaker Rahul Narwekar on Tuesday said that he gave his judgment according to the Supreme Court order. Addressing a press briefing here, the Maharashtra Assembly Speaker said that the top court never said that the appointment of Bharat Gogawale of the Shinde group as whip was wrong. This came days after Narwekar adjudicated the Shiv Sena MLAs' disqualification petition and approved Bharat Gogawale's appointment as the official chief whip of the party.
"Supreme court never said that appointment of Bharat Gogawale as whip (of Shinde faction) was wrong. SC said that the Speaker must recognise the real Shiv Sena. Because I received claims from both sides, I gave my judgment according to the Supreme Court order," Narwekar said. Delivering his decision on cross-petitions by Shiv Sena factions seeking disqualification of rival group MLAs after a split in the party in June last year, Maharashtra Speaker Rahul Narwekar said on January 10 that the "Shinde faction was real Shiv Sena when rival factions emerged". The Speaker referred to the Shiv Sena constitution while delivering his crucial decision and said "decision of Paksha Pramukh cannot be taken as decision of the political party". Soon after the verdict, Shiv Sena (UBT) faction leader Sanjay Raut said that this is all match-fixing and they will approach the Supreme Court. Addressing a press conference, Raut said, "The BJP dreamed that one day they would destroy Balasaheb Thackeray's Shiv Sena, but Shiv Sena will not end like this. Shiv Sena is in every Maharashtrian. Today's decision is not a decision but a conspiracy. We will approach the Supreme Court. Our fight will continue in the court. The Speaker of the Legislative Assembly, to whom the power was given by the Supreme Court, had an opportunity to write history, which he has wasted. All those who are celebrating today are traitors to Maharashtra and their situation will be like that of Mussolini." Meanwhile, Narwekar also said that some political leaders and workers are misleading people about the judgment. "On January 10, I read judgment on disqualification (of MLAs). For the last six days, some political leaders and workers have been misleading people about my judgment. Shiv Sena (UBT) is using derogatory language against me. They don't even respect the Assembly speaker. It's really harmful to the democratic structure," he added.

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