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NCP Sacks Ajit Pawar as Legislature Unit Leader after He Joins Hands with BJP, Says He Defied Party Politics

Ajit Pawar, the NCP chief's nephew, was elected as the legislature party leader on October 30 following the results of the Maharashtra Assembly elections.

News18.com

Updated:November 23, 2019, 11:48 PM IST
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NCP Sacks Ajit Pawar as Legislature Unit Leader after He Joins Hands with BJP, Says He Defied Party Politics
A file image of NCP chief Sharad Pawar with nephew Ajit Pawar.

New Delhi: The NCP on Saturday evening removed Ajit Pawar as the party's legislature unit leader, hours after he joined hands with the BJP in a coup and took oath as deputy of Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis.

Ajit Pawar's actions defied the party's policies, said a resolution passed at the legislature wing's meeting here, attended by party supremo Sharad Pawar. State NCP chief Jayant Patil will have all the constitutional rights till the next legislature party leader is elected, it said.

Ajit Pawar, the NCP chief's nephew, was elected as the legislature party leader on October 30 following the results of the Maharashtra Assembly elections.

The resolution passed at the Saturday meeting also said Ajit Pawar's right to issue a whip have been revoked. The party authorised Sharad Pawar and Jayant Patil to decide its stand in light of the developments.

Fadnavis on Saturday returned to helm the state as the CM for a second term with the backing of Ajit Pawar who took oath as his deputy. Sharad Pawar said the

decision to side with Fadnavis was his nephew's personal choice and not that of the party.

NCP chief spokesperson Nawab Malik said the list of NCP MLAs submitted by Ajit Pawar to the governor before taking oath was actually a letter signed by the party MLAs when they had attended a meeting earlier.

A few of the MLAs, who were present with Ajit Pawar at the oath-taking ceremony, later pledged their loyalty to Sharad Pawar. The number of legislators, if any, backing Ajit Pawar remains a mystery. However, the party said 50 of its 54 MLAs have returned to Sharad Pawar's camp.

Meanwhile, sources said Ajit Pawar's primary membership of the party remains intact. "Efforts are on convince him to return to the party's fold," they said.

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