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Sharad Pawar-led NCP Wanted to Join Hands with BJP Two Years Ago, Claims Devendra Fadnavis

File photo of BJP leader and former Maharashtra CM Devendra Fadnavis.

File photo of BJP leader and former Maharashtra CM Devendra Fadnavis.

Asked about his dramatic early morning swearing-in as CM along with NCP leader Ajit Pawar as his deputy, Fadnavis said he is going to write a book on the entire episode.

  • PTI Pune
  • Last Updated: June 23, 2020, 10:17 PM IST
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BJP leader Devendra Fadnavis on Tuesday claimed the NCP wanted to join hands with his party two years ago and asserted this is not the time to talk about fall or change of government in Maharashtra which is battling the coronavirus pandemic.

Addressing a press conference in Pune, the former chief minister claimed the Sharad Pawar-headed Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) wanted to be a part of the BJP-led government in Maharashtra two years ago.

The leader of opposition in the assembly said, "This is not the time to do any valuation of the government. This is the right time to raise questions (regarding the COVID-19 management), this is the time to point out shortcomings.

"But this is not the time to evaluate the government on the basis of its shortcomings. This is not the time to say change CM or there is no need of this government."

As the main opposition party, the BJP is highlighting shortcomings of the Shiv Sena-Congress-NCP government, he said. "All we need to see is how can the shortcomings can be removed and how can they be put forth before the government and that is what we are doing," said Fadnavis.

To a question, he clarified that no new political equation is evolving in the state, where the BJP lost power late last year.

"There is no new equation. To change the government or (push for) fall of the government is not our agenda...everyone is seeing how the government is running and there is no need for me to see it differently," the former chief minister said.

Replying to a question regarding his interview to a Marathi news channel, Fadnavis said the NCP wanted to join hands with the BJP in the state two years ago when he was the chief minister.

"They wanted to come with us two years ago. There were meetings in this regard but our senior leaders made it clear that the BJP will not be able to do so without (approval of) the Shiv Sena.

"They (BJP leaders) said we can isolate the Congress but the Shiv Sena needs to be with us. If it is okay, we can go ahead (with NCP proposal). As this was the stand of our senior leaders, the entire process, which had gone quite far, went into cold storage," he claimed.

Asked about his dramatic early morning swearing-in as chief minister along with NCP leader Ajit Pawar as deputy CM last November, Fadnavis said he is going to write a book on the entire episode, which had created a flutter.

"I have said in my interview that I am going to going to write a book on that entire episode. If I reveal all suspense now, there will no demand for the book," he said.

In November last year, the Shiv Sena snapped ties with the BJP and joined hands with the NCP and the Congress, its long-standing political rivals, to form the Maha Vikas Aghadi government in Maharashtra.

Fadnavis was in the city to review the COVID-19 situation in Pune city and the adjoining Pimpri-Chinchwad. He said COVID-19 testing capacity needs to be ramped up in the city.

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