Mumbai: The Maharashtra political crisis escalated further as 34 MLAs on Wednesday wrote a letter to the Governor extending support to Shiv Sena rebel Eknath Shinde.
The MLAs, who are camping in Guwahati, wrote to Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari stating that Shinde would remain the legislative party leader of the Shiv Sena.
The development comes after the party chief and Maharashtra Chief Minister sacked Shinde.
In the letter, the rebel MLAs while cancelling the Uddhav Thackeray's nominee Sunil Prabhu as chief whip, appointed Bharat Gogavle as Chief Whip of the party.
Notably, after Uddhav's warning to these rebel MLAs on Wednesday, Shinde took to the micro-blogging site Twitter and said that Thackeray's summons for a meeting with party MLAs this evening ''illegal''.
Following the political crisis in Maharashtra due to the Shinde rebellion, the Shiv Sena earlier on Wednesday issued an ultimatum to its MLAs, saying an inability to attend the 5 pm meeting will invoke action.
Shinde, who camped in Surat, Gujarat from Maharashtra reached Guwahati with 33 party MLAs and 7 independent MLAs.
He claimed that 40 MLAs have accompanied him to Guwahati and they are devoted to Balasaheb Thackeray's 'Hindutva' ideology.
A few reports claimed that these rebel MLAs are backed by Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).