Guwahati gains two more MLAs, increasing Shinde's stake in the Sena

Two more Shiv Sena MLAs from Surat have arrived in Guwahati . They are just short of the all-crucial mark of 37, which would shield them from disqualification .

Guwahati: With the addition of two more Shiv Sena MLAs from Surat and the support of a large national party, rebel leader Eknath Shinde and his men have positioned themselves to make their own call: to stake claim as true Sena, form a new party, or merge with BJP, without incurring anti-defection penalties.They were also accompanied by a member of the legislative council.Since being relocated here from Surat on Wednesday morning, Shindes' strength has been building up.But Dadaji Bhause and Sanjay Rathod landed at Guwahati from Surat by a chartered plane at 9 p.m. on Tuesday and were just short of the all-crucial mark of 37, which would shield him and his Sena men from disqualification if they were to leave Uddhav Thackerays control.

In a video that was sent out, Shinde addressing his men in Marathi: This decision, I have heard, is a monumental one, and they will take care of us, says Shinde.On Thursday, for the first time, a BJP minister, Ashok Singhal of Assam, drove to the hotel and met with Maharashtra legislators, giving the first indication of which way things were going.