Five-time NCP MLA and nephew of Sharad Pawar, Ajit Pawar resigned as the Baramati legislator on Friday.Even as there was speculation about Ajit’s move, Pawar claimed that his nephew — who has since gone incommunicado — may have resigned because he was hurt that the NCP chief has been named in the ED case related to the Maharashtra State Cooperative Bank scam.
Ajit rang up Maharashtra Assembly Speaker Haribhau Bagde around 5.40 pm, informing him that he had submitted his resignation to the Speaker’s office in Mumbai and requested Bagde to immediately accept it.
“Overwhelmed to see the huge gathering in Mumbai today, in support of @PawarSpeaks. Heartfelt thanks to @NCPspeaks officials, party workers & also our opponents who stood up for the truth in spite of our differences. I am sure this belief in Pawar Saheb will never fade,” was Ajit’s last message on Twitter before he went incommunicado.
The news of the resignation rattled the NCP, which had been looking at a possible revival of the party after the ED’s notice to Pawar. The NCP chief, while speaking to mediapersons in Pune, said: “I have not been able to directly speak to him (Ajit) after I got to know about his decision. He did not consult me… I feel he could not tolerate that I was booked.”
Pawar said that Ajit told his son Parth that politics has stooped to the lowest level. “He told his sons that it was better to stay away from politics…”
The NCP chief, however, denied any family conflict and claimed that he had the last word in the Pawar clan.
Over the last few years, there has been speculation over who would take control of the NCP after Pawar. At 79, Pawar remains the party’s binding force. While Ajit earlier had been groomed to eventually take over charge, there is a strong lobby within the party that does not agree with his brusque style of functioning.
There had also been speculation that the entry of Rohit Pawar, the grand nephew of the NCP chief, had made Ajit jittery.
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