Mumbai : Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan rushed to Delhi on Wednesday amid speculations of a possible change of leadership in the state.

After performing the traditional puja of ‘Ashadhi Ekadashi’ in Pandharpur, Chavan immediately left for Delhi from Pune.

 “I sought peace and prosperity in the state. Similarly, I prayed for a good monsoon so that the state remains drought-free,” Chavan said after performing the puja of Lord Vitthal and Rukmini.

In Delhi, he is scheduled to meet party president Sonia Gandhi.

 Speculation regarding leadership change was in the air immediately after the Lok Sabha elections. Eventually, it subsided after the party high-command backed Chavan.

But when it became clear last week that the idea of ‘collective Leadership’ was not working well, speculations of leadership change resurfaced and a senior minister’s Delhi visit on Tuesday added fuel to it.

The AK Antony committee that analysed the party’s defeat in the Lok Sabha elections had recently submitted its report to the high-command. During the committee’s discussions in Delhi, many senior ministers blamed Chavan for not providing matching resources to the candidates to contest elections. They also referred to his commitment, which he did not fulfill, leaving the contesting leaders in the lurch.

However, Antony backed Chavan when the chief minister assured the committee that his government was taking decisions on a war footing to change people’s perception.

The assurance from the Chief Minister and the consequent backing by the top leadership temporarily contained the unease in the state party. But a few days after the meeting, some MLAs and a few prominent leaders again started raising the demand for a leadership change in the state.

A front was opened against the chief minister and the MPCC chief Manikrao Thakre.

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