Opposition BJP on Friday demanded that Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, who is recovering from a surgery, delegate powers to his cabinet colleagues.
He could hand over the charge to his son and minister Aaditya Thackeray if he did not trust others, said one BJP leader.
Mr Thackeray, 61, underwent a cervical spine surgery in November 2021 and remained absent throughout the five-day winter session of the state legislature held in the last week of December.
He has been participating in official meetings through video-conference from his residence.
Talking to reporters in Kolhapur, state BJP president Chandrakant Patil said, “People are saying the chief minister has not met people for almost last 70 days. Therefore, Thackeray should delegate his powers to someone who can attend daily meetings and sometimes visit places in the state.
“He is like our friend, so I wish him a speedy recovery. But the task of managing and controlling the state, which has a population of around 12 crore, cannot be carried out by sitting at home. Such responsibilities should be taken more seriously,” the BJP leader said.
Elsewhere, BJP MLA and former minister Sambhaji Patil Nilangekar said Uddhav Thackeray should hand over the charge, for the time being, to deputy chief minister Ajit Pawar or any other minister.
If he “does not trust Ajit Pawar or (Pawar’s party) the NCP,” then he can give the responsibility to environment minister Aaditya Thackeray, Mr Nilangekar said.
With the state reeling under the coronavirus pandemic and the “deteriorating'” law and order situation, a full-time chief minister was needed, the BJP leader said in a press release in Latur.
As chief minister Mr Thackeray can not leave house, the government has become “directionless,” Nilangekar said, adding that he could not even attend the meeting held by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday to review the COVID-19 situation.
Meanwhile, Chandrakant Patil said in Kolhapur that the Shiv Sena, Thackeray’s party, was losing out due to its alliance with the NCP and Congress.
“A Sena candidate cannot win the election of Mumbai Bank while an NCP candidate becomes its chairman,” he said.
He also claimed that the Sena was going to contest assembly elections in Goa and Uttar Pradesh only to get the tag of national party.