Shiv Sena MLA Kailas Patil, who escaped from a car carrying rebel lawmakers in Surat, claimed on Thursday that some of those taken to the camp run by Maharashtra Minister Eknath Shinde might want to return but were forced to stay behind.
Addressing a press conference in Mumbai, Mr Patil recalled how he walked a few kilometers near the Maharashtra-Gujarat border, then got lifted onto a two-wheeler and a truck before driving off. reach the official residence of the Chief Minister of Maharashtra, ‘Varsha’ in Mumbai in the early hours of Tuesday.
Shiv Sena leader Eknath Shinde is currently camped out with rebel MPs in the Assam town of Guwahati, plunging the party-led government of Maharashtra into crisis.
Mr Patil said after casting his ballot in Mumbai on June 20 for the Maharashtra Legislative Council elections, he was called to Mr Shinde’s bungalow in nearby Thane.
The Osamanabad MP said he and others were taken to the Thane Mayor’s bungalow where their cars were changed before continuing.
“A person from his team (from Mr. Shinde) was with me and we drove through Vasai-Virar (in nearby Palghar district). I don’t know much about the area, but as we passed through the road and reached the (Maharashtra-Gujarat) checkpoint, I realized that I was being taken in another direction,” he said.
“When the cars stopped, the staff member said there was a check at the station and told me to take a short walk. I opened the car door and saw that there was a huge traffic jam,” Mr Patil said.
After getting out of the car, the MP crossed the lane and onto the road towards Mumbai, he said, recalling that he was also drenched in rain at the time.
“I thought these people would pick me up. I kept walking between the trucks for about a kilometer. I asked a motorbike driver for a lift, but he refused. Later, another person came to me. helped and left me in a hotel, three-four km from the checkpoint. There I tried to ask for help from truckers and private vehicles heading towards Mumbai,” he said. he declares.
Mr Patil said he then called the residence of Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray and also a Sena MP and let them know he was coming back. His cell phone battery was low and therefore he could not share his location with them, he said.
“Later a truck driver from Uttar Pradesh heading to Mumbai accepted my request and drove me to Dahisar toll (naka) (an entry point to Mumbai). There, a person came to get me,” he says.
Mr. Patil noted that MP Nitin Deshmukh also returned from Surat where he was taken along with rebel MPs.
“There may be MPs who want to come back but cannot come back due to pressure or other issues,” he said.
“The Shiv Sena made me a member of Zilla Parishad and an MP. My principles do not allow me to cheat the Shiv Sena. Others who were taken to Gujarat (from Mumbai) might also have the same feeling,” said he declared.
Mr Patil said that after returning to Mumbai, he contacted Nanded Shiv Sena politician Balaji Kalyankar and the latter also had a word with Chief Minister Thackeray. Later, Mr. Kalyankar’s phone was switched off, he added.
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