Leader of Opposition and former Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis on Saturday claimed that it was NCP leader Ajit Pawar who approached him to form a government in Maharashtra and not the BJP. Fadnavis said that Ajit Pawar made him talk to some MLAs and told him that he was joining hands with the BJP after discussing it with his uncle and NCP chief Sharad Pawar.
Speaking to news channel Zee 24taas, Fadnavis said Ajit Pawar had assured him of support of all 54 NCP MLAs. “He made me talk to some MLAs who told me they wanted to go with the BJP. Ajit Pawar also told me he had discussed it with (NCP chief) Sharad Pawar.”
In a stunner amid deadlock over government formation in the state and advance stage talks between the Shiv Sena, the NCP and the Congress, Fadnavis and Pawar were sworn in as CM and deputy CM in a hush-hush ceremony early morning on November 23. However, their government lasted only for 80 hours.
"Ajit Pawar approached us and said the NCP doesn’t want to go with the Congress. A three-party government (also involving the Shiv Sena) can’t run. We (NCP) are ready to go with the BJP for a stable government," Fadnavis said.
The BJP leader admitted that the move to form government with the help of Ajit Pawar "boomeranged", but added that "behind the scenes" and "between the lines" stories about the political drama will be revealed in the days to come. Fadnavis resigned on November 26, paving the way for a Maharashtra Vikas Aghadi government led by Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray.
He also said he had nothing to do with the clean chit given to Ajit Pawar in the irrigation scam, saying "the ACB affidavit is of November 27, and I resigned on November 26". Fadnavis went on to add that the ACB affidavit "will not stick (stand) in high court".
(With PTI inputs)