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Maharashtra crisis: 'More than half' of rebels are in touch, claims Sanjay Raut

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Mumbai, Jun 28: Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut on Tuesday claimed that more than half of the rebel Shiv Sena MLAs are in touch with the Uddhav Thackeray camp.

"More than half of the rebel MLAs are in touch with us, they have been holed up there... They support us and they will come back," Raut told reporters.

Sanjay Raut

"It's an order for them to rest there (in Guwahati) till July 11. There is no work for them in Maharashtra: Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut on SC order of allowing Eknath Shinde and other rebel MLAs to file a reply to the disqualification notice issued to them by Dy Speaker by July 11," Raut added.

About 12 to 14 MLAs are still in touch with us, Aaditya Thackeray said on Monday.

In what seems to be an apparent bid to topple the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government in Maharashtra, dissident legislators of Shiv Sena, which heads the ruling coalition, have been camping in Guwahati, around 2,700 km away from Mumbai, since June 22.

A group of rebel Maharashtra Shiv Sena MLAs, led by minister Eknath Shinde, were taken to Surat from Mumbai on June 21 and then flown to Guwahati the next day.

Since then, several chartered flights carrying dissident MLAs have landed at LGBI Airport.

The dissidents have named their group as "Shiv Sena (Balasaheb)".

The rebel group said it enjoys a two-thirds majority in the legislature party and will prove its strength in the House.

The Maharashtra Legislature Secretariat on Saturday issued summonses to 16 of the rebel Shiv Sena MLAs, including Shinde, seeking written replies by the evening of June 27 to the complaints seeking their disqualification.

The MLAs, after receiving the notices, have been huddling inside the hotel since Sunday morning, discussing various options to respond to the notices.

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