BS Koshyari, RSS veteran and a former Chief Minister and MP, was appointed Governor in 2019

New Delhi:
Maharashtra was among 12 states to get a new Governor as President Droupadi Murmu made crucial Constitutional appointments this morning. The President also appointed a new Lieutenant Governor for the Union Territory of Ladakh.

Here are top 10 points on this big story

  1. Ramesh Bais, former Jharkhand governor, will replace Bhagat Singh Koshyari as Maharashtra Governor. Mr Koshyari’s exit from Raj Bhavan has been welcomed by Opposition leaders who have accused him of hurting Marathi sentiment with his controversial remarks on icons.

  2. Eighty-year-old Koshyari had last month told Prime Minister Narendra Modi that he wished to step down from the post. “Governor Koshyari has expressed his desire to spend the rest of his life in reading, writing and other leisurely activities,” read a Raj Bhavan statement.

  3. An RSS veteran who has served as a Chief Minister and an MP in both Houses of Parliament, Mr Koshyari was appointed Governor in 2019. During his term, he frequently hit headlines over multiple run-ins with the Uddhav Thackeray government and his controversial statements.

  4. The Uddhav Thackeray-led government and the Raj Bhavan clashed on several issues, including the reopening of temples after the Covid pandemic, refusal of a state plane for Mr Koshyari’s visit to Dehradun and a special Assembly session following the rape and murder of a woman in Mumbai’s Sakinaka.

  5. Mr Koshyari sparked a row in November last year when he said Chhattrapati Shivaji was “an icon of the old days”. Top BJP leaders had to jump into the firefight as the political opposition accused the Governor of insulting the Maratha leader. Prior to that, he courted controversy when he said Maharashtra will have no money left if Gujaratis and Rajasthanis leave.

  6. Aaditya Thackeray, former minister and a leader of the Thackeray faction of Shiv Sena, welcomed the appointment of the new Governor, calling it a “big win for Maharashtra”. Sharad Pawar’s Nationalist Congress Party also welcomed Mr Koshyari’s exit. 

  7. In Ladakh, Brigadier (Dr) BD Mishra (Retd) will take over after the President accepted the resignation of Radha Krishna Mathur. The appointment comes amid growing demand for statehood and a special status for Ladakh. Leaders of the region have raised environmental concerns over the infrastructure push and demanded autonomy that they say would help them bring development in a manner they want.

  8. Lt. General Kaiwalya Trivikram Parnaik (Retired) will take over as Governor of Arunachal Pradesh, Lakshman Prasad Acharya as Governor of Sikkim, C P Radhakrishnan as Governor of Jharkhand and Shiv Pratap Shukla as Governor of Himachal Pradesh. Shiv Pratap Shukla is a former Union Minister and an influential Brahmin leader from Uttar Pradesh.

  9. Also, Gulab Chand Kataria has been appointed Governor of Assam, former Supreme Court judge Justice S Abdul Nazeer as Governor of Andhra Pradesh, Biswa Bhusan Harichandan as Governor of Chhattisgarh and Anusuiya Uikye as Governor of Manipur. 

  10. A sitting MLA with strong RSS connections, Mr Kataria was a key contender for the Chief Minister’s post in the run-up to this year’s Rajasthan polls. His appointment could be seen as a well-thought-out move to remove him from the big race. Another key appointment is that of Justice Nazeer, who was part of the five-member Constitution bench that delivered the unanimous judgment in the Ayodhya Ram Janmabhoomi case in 2019.  

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