NCP leader and nephew of the party founder Sharad Pawar has finally defected from the party office and has joined the ranks of those with the Eknath Shinde-led Shiv Sena and BJP coalition government in Maharashtra. Ajit Pawar is said to be backed by 40 MLAs out of a total of 53 NCP MLAs in the State Assembly including party heavyweights like Chhagan Bhujbal and Dilip Walse Patil, who were known to be very close to Sharad Pawar.
The defection marks the 2nd mutiny in the Maharashtra political circle after Eknath Shinde-led coup decimated Uddhav Thackeray-led Shiv Sena. Shinde became the CM of the State after being backed by the BJP and following suit Ajit Pawar joined the Government and is ready to be sworn in as the Deputy CM of Maharashtra.
NCP Mutiny – Waiting to happen
With the Parliamentary Elections due in less than a year’s time, the Nationalist Congress Party is licking its wounds after being dealt with a severe blow by the Ajit Pawar-led faction in the party. Opposition parties in the State like Congress, claimed that this was something waiting to happen and the delay has been caused by the hard under-the-table negotiations initiated by Ajit for the state cabinet berth.
NCP disqualifies warring factions
As per the latest news, as a damage control measure, the NCP moved swiftly to disqualify the defecting MLAs. NCP supremo Sharad Pawar was heard to be on a defensive foot saying, “How many are with you is not important. Important is organization,” as a response to the current developments. NCP President, Jayant Patil spoke to the media saying, “We have sent a petition to the Assembly speaker last night. We requested him to hear us. Our party’s strength in the Assembly is 53, of which 9 have defected, the rest are with us. We will give them a fair chance to come back but will take action against those who do not come back.”
It is believed that the man behind the show has been BJP’s Devendra Fadnavis, who initiated and executed the coup by including Ajit Pawar in the coalition, proving himself to be the man with the brains.
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