Big NCP Split: Ajit Pawar Joins Shinde Govt, Takes Oath As Maharashtra Dy CM Along With Fadnavis; 8 Party Leaders Become Ministers

Big NCP Split: Ajit Pawar Joins Shinde Govt, Takes Oath As Maharashtra Dy CM Along With Fadnavis; 8 Party Leaders Become Ministers

Maharashtra political drama at full play as Sharad Pawar's nephew Ajit Pawar reaches Governor's house with NCP MLAs by his side.

FPJ Web DeskUpdated: Sunday, July 02, 2023, 09:35 PM IST
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Big NCP Split: Ajit Pawar Joins Shinde Govt, Takes Oath As Maharashtra Dy CM |

Mumbai: Senior NCP leader Ajit Pawar on Sunday afternoon took oath as the Deputy Chief Minister of Maharashtra. Pawar earlier reached Raj Bhawan along with a section of party MLAs. Maharashtra CM Eknath Shinde was also at the Governor's residence amid reports of Ajit Pawar's faction joining the NDA government in the state. Senior NCP leaders Chhagan Bhujbal and Praful Patel have joined Ajit Pawar in his meeting with Ramesh Bais. Chhagan Bhujbal, Dilip Valse-Patil, Hasan Mushrif, Dhananjay Munde, DharmaraoBaba Atram, Aditi Tatkare, Sanjay Bansode and Anil Patil took oath as ministers in Shinde cabinet.

Pawar will now share the Deputy Chief Minister's post with BJP's Devendra Fadnavis. Ajit Pawar had publically expressed his desire to step down as Leader of Opposition in the Maharashtra Assembly.

The massive development comes after Ajit Pawar earlier during the day met some party leaders and MLAs at his official residence in Mumbai.

However, NCP president Sharad Pawar, who was in Pune, said he was unaware of the meet, but added that Ajit Pawar, as leader of opposition (LoP) in the Maharashtra Assembly, can call a meeting of legislators.

Only few days back, Ajit Pawar had said that he was not keen on continuing as the LoP and wanted to work in the party organisation to strengthen the NCP.

Senior NCP leader Chhagan Bhujbal and party's working president Supriya Sule were among the leaders present at the meeting held at Ajit Pawar's official residence 'Devgiri' earlier in the day, while state party president Jayant Patil was not present. Some MLAs were also present in the meeting.

Sharad Pawar clueless about meeting

Meanwhile, Sharad Pawar told reporters in Pune that he was unaware of the meeting in Mumbai. 'On July 6, I have called a meeting of senior leaders and decisions related to the party will be discussed,' he said. The NCP chief also said that as the LoP, Ajit Pawar can call a meeting of legislators.

However, as the picture became clear with Ajit Pawar taking oath as deputy chief minister, Sanjay Raut reportedly called up Sharad Pawar and spoke to NCP chief. Sharad Pawar told Raut that "people were with them and that they will rebuild everything."

(With additional information from Agencies)

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