Hours after his nephew took oath as Deputy Chief Minister of Maharashtra, NCP president Sharad Pawar said that it was against the very grain of his party and the action will attract stringent disciplinary action. Addressing a joint press conference along with Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray, Pawar said, “Ajit Pawar's decision is an act of indiscipline. No NCP worker is in favour of the NCP-BJP government. NCP MLAs who support the BJP should know this move attracts provisions of anti-defection law." (MAHARASHTRA LIVE UPDATES)
Presenting the two NCP lawmakers, Pawar Senior said that Ajit Pawar deceived not only him but Governor also. “Can't rule out cheating of governor; Ajit Pawar may have submitted 'ready-made' list of NCP MLAs,” Pawar added. Elaborating his allegation, he said 54 newly-elected legislators of the NCP had signed a paper along with their names and constituencies for internal purpose and these signatures may have been misused as letter of support and submitted to the governor. "If this is true, the governor has also been misled," Pawar said, adding that the paper may have been taken by Ajit Pawar as the leader of the legislature party.
He said those MLAs, who were taken to the Raj Bhavan for oath-taking without their knowledge, have contacted him and informed how they were misled.
Three such legislators, including Rajendra Shingane from Buldhana and Sandeep Kshirsagar from Beed, were present at the press conference.
They said they were called to party leader Dhananjay Munde's house at 7 am and from there were taken in a car to Raj Bhavan. Pawar said no action would be taken against those who unknowingly went to Raj bhavan for the swearing-in and were back in the party fold.
NCP legislature party meeting would be held later in the day at around 4 pm to elect the new leader.
Uddhav Thackeray said, "Earlier the EVM khel (game) was going on and now this is new khel. From here onwards I don't think elections are even needed."
"Everyone knows what Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj did when betrayed and attacked from the back," he said, adding that Sena workers will foil all attempts to poach party MLAs.
The overnight development makes Friday’s statements of political leadres a thing of past. Less than 24 hours back, Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut on Friday had ‘confirmed’ that party chief Uddhav Thackeray had agreed to become the chief minister. Raut’s remarks came a few hours after Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) chief Sharad Pawar said Congress-NCP-Shiv Sena will form a government in Maharashtra under the leadership of Thackeray. The announcement was made after a meeting of the three parties to evolve a consensus on the development agenda for governance for the prospective ruling coalition.
(With Agency Inputs)