Mumbai (TIP): Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) president Sharad Pawar on September distanced himself from the controversial issue of deputy CM Ajit Pawar’s resignation. “As far as the party is concerned the issue of resignation is over,” said the Maratha strongman indicating that it was up to Ajit whether to return to the government or work for the party from outside.
Pawar also reiterated his support to the Congress-led coalition in the state and the centre. He instructed state NCP chief Madhukar Pichad to tell party workers to end the public demonstrations against CM Prithviraj Chavan. The stern message from Pawar is perceived as an ultimatum to Ajit to restrict the decision-making to himself and not take the party for granted. This was evident as Pawar kept reiterating that the government will continue to function. “There was no question of accepting the resignations of 19 NCP ministers of the Democratic Front government,” he said,
Ajit though is unlikely to take back his resignation. “Ajit has made up his mind to clear his name from the irrigation scam before he returns to the government,” sources within the NCP said. “His purpose of holding a meeting in Mumbai was to allow party MLAs and leaders to vent their anger against the highhandedness of the Congress under Chavan’s leadership.” Insiders in the organisation said the party was waiting for Pawar to intervene. “We are all waiting for a message from Pawar,” said NCP chief spokesperson Nawab Mullick.