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Maharashtra minister Eknath Shinde goes incommunicado along with some Sena MLAs camping in Gujarat hotel

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Maharashtra minister and senior Shiv Sena leader Eknath Shinde and some other Shiv Sena MLAs have gone incommunicado, and are camping at a hotel in Gujarat’s Surat city, a day after the ruling Maha Vikas Agahdi (MVA) suffered a setback in the state Legislative Council polls by losing one out of the six seats it contested.

The MLAs, who are seemingly unhappy with their leadership, arrived in Surat on Monday night and are camping at the Le Meridian Hotel here, they said.

”Some Shiv Sena MLAs, including Maharashtra minister Eknath Shinde, are in Surat,” a source said.

A large number of police personnel have been deployed outside the hotel.

The opposition BJP on Monday won all five seats it contested in the Maharashtra Legislative Council elections for 10 seats, while Congress candidate and Dalit leader Chandrakant Handore lost, in another setback for the MVA, comprising the Shiv Sena, NCP and Congress, after the Rajya Sabha polls earlier this month.

Two candidates each of the Shiv Sena and NCP won, while the Congress managed to bag just one seat.

Ten Council seats were up for grabs and 11 candidates were in the fray for the elections, which came days after the Rajya Sabha polls, which saw the BJP handing an embarrassing defeat to the Shiv Sena-led ruling coalition.