Maharashtra: Ajit Pawar gets signatures of 40 ready to bolt

While Ajit is calling up NCP MLAs personally to seek their signatures, the senior Pawar hasn’t made any counter move yet.

Published: 18th April 2023 07:27 AM  |   Last Updated: 18th April 2023 09:53 AM   |  A+A-

Maharashtra Deputy CM Ajit Pawar

NCP leader Ajit Pawar (File Photo | PTI)

Express News Service

MUMBAI:  NCP leader Ajit Pawar’s efforts to become Eknath Shinde’s successor as Maharashtra chief minister in alliance with the BJP, is gaining momentum with the former collecting consent signatures from his lawmakers within his party.

“About 40 of the 53 NCP MLAs have given their consent signatures so far. The list would be presented to the governor when the time arrives,” said a well placed source in the party. This newspaper was the first to report Ajit’s plans of stepping into Shinde’s shoes, assuming the Supreme Court would disqualify the Sena lawmakers who had rebelled against Uddhav Thackeray.

ALSO READ | Ajit Pawar has made up his mind, says Sena’s Raut

What is intriguing though is the stony silence of NCP patriarch Sharad Pawar. While Ajit is calling up NCP MLAs personally to seek their signatures, the senior Pawar hasn’t made any counter move yet. In 2019 after Ajit bolted, Sharad Pawar had called up all NCP lawmakers to keep his party intact.

“We are surprised Sharad Pawar has not made his phone calls yet,” said sources, while keeping their fingers crossed on his last-minute intervention that could tilt the scales. Ajit skipped his day’s scheduled events in Pune and stayed put in Mumbai to continue discussions with his close confidants. 

Independent MLA Ravi Rana, who is close to Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, said the turning point will come once Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union home minister Amit Shah give their green light.The BJP is weighing options of timing Shinde’s exit — before or after the Supreme Court’s verdict or before the Karnataka elections.

“Some legal experts have advised that this change should happen before the SC verdict. The logic: if Ajit is sworn in before the judgment, the new government would neither fall nor damage the BJP’s prospects. Things are going back and forth. A final call is awaited,” said a source in the BJP. 

Seniors too with Ajit

Many senior NCP MLAs seen as close to Sharad Pawar, too, are extending support to Ajit Pawar’s coup, sources said


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  • K N Gopalan

    As a common citizen would like to know if supreme court play the role of the speaker of an state legislature assembly. What the then speaker or deputy speaker of the Maharashtra assembly were doing. Why didn't they take action and disqualify them if the respective party head has recommended like that. Instead the then CM resigned. He should have proved his majority after the so called rebels were disqualified. They did not do either of it. Now they what the clock to be turned back. I can't believe it.
    5 months ago reply
  • ஜெய்ஹிந்த்புரம்

    It will be an insult to the horses if we call this "horse trading".
    5 months ago reply
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