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BALASAHEB THORAT

Maharashtra cabinet gives nod to make 'Tanhaji' tax-free in the state

The film, starring Ajay Devgn, Saif Ali Khan and Kajol, has been directed by Om Raut.

After row, Sanjay Raut retracts comment on Indira-don meet

The Sena MP took back his comments after a furious Congress took up the issue up w...

After UP, 'Tanhaji' declared tax-free in Haryana; movie also enters Rs 100 cr-club

The film will also be made tax-free in Maharashtra.

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  • Thackeray is heading a coalition government, the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA), whose main constituents are the Sena, the Congress and the NCP.

    AICC general secretary in-charge for Maharashtra Mallikarjun Kharge made the announcement at a meeting of the party MLAs. "The Congress president (Sonia Gandhi) has approved the name of Balasaheb Thorat as the Congress Legislature Party leader in the Maharashtra Legislative Assembly," Kharge told the MLAs.

    Congress leaders Balasaheb Thorat and Ashok Chavan held meetings with Uddhav Thackeray and Ajit Pawar. There may be some reallocation of portfolios following these meetings. Even the NCP is seeking some portfolios from the Sena. The Congress is demanding two of these departments but is willing to settle for either rural development or agriculture.

    Some of those who are upset include former Opposition leader Vijay Wadettiwar, a strong proponent of Congress and NCP supporting the Shiv Sena-led alliance in the state. He has gone incommunicado after the Cabinet reshuffle.

    The power sharing tussle and ministerial portfolios are still delaying the Uddhav Thackeray-led cabinet in Maharashtra. Apart from the demand for one more important portfolio, urban development, two major internal issues in the Congress are proving to be the speed breaker before the portfolio allocation.

    Among other NCP ministers, Jayant Patil has got Irrigation, Chaggan Bhujbal got food and civil supplies, Hasan Mushrif got rural development, Jitendra Awhad got housing, Balasaheb Patil got cooperation department.

    First-time Shiv Sena MLA Aaditya Thackeray, who is the son of Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, has been given charge of the environment, tourism and protocol departments. Senior Congress leader Balasaheb Thorat has got the revenue ministry. Thackeray expanded his month-old ministry on December 30 by inducting 36 ministers.

    The Congress has refused to submit its choice of ministers for the allocated portfolios, staying firm on its demand for plum posts and upping the mind games among the three main partners of the ruling coalition in Maharashtra.

    Cabinet expansion of Maharashtra government will take place on December 30 with thirty-six ministers taking oath that day. Currently the Uddhav Thackeray-led cabinet has six ministers besides chief minister Thackeray. The swearing-in is likely to take place at the Vidhan Bhavan.

    The leaders held several rounds of talks with Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray during the day, sources said. "Allocation of ministries has been almost finalized. All issues have been resolved. The allocation is expected to be announcedby tomorrow," a source said.

    Besides the post of DCM, the NCP has got 12 cabinet and four ministers of state posts and around a dozen important portfolios with huge budgetary allocations annually. NCP President Sharad Pawar's nephew Ajit Pawar is the new Finance Minister entrusted with the crucial job of improving the state's precarious financial position.

    If a senior NCP leader is to be believed, Ajit Pawar was to be brought into the Maha Vikas Aghadi government’s cabinet on November 28 itself. However, NCP president Sharad Pawar decided it would be best to induct him at a later stage in view of Ajit’s “mistake” of joining hands with the BJP’s Devendra Fadnavis.

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