3 Jul 2023

Maharashtra: Disqualification Petition Moved Against Ajit Pawar; Most Of MLAS Will Return, Says Jayant Patil

Mumbai: The Nationalist Congress Party has said Ajit Pawar, who has joined the Eknath Shinde-led government as Deputy Chief Minister with some leaders, doesn't have the support of 36 MLAs as being claimed.

The NCP has 53 MLAs in the 288-member Maharashtra Assembly and Ajit Pawar needs the support of at least 36 legislators to not attract the provisions of anti-defection law.

Maharashtra Nationalist Congress Party president Jayant Patil said his party has moved a disqualification petition against Ajit Pawar and eight others who took oath as ministers in the Eknath Shinde-led state government.

Patil said the disqualification petition has been sent to Speaker Rahul Narvekar. He said an e-mail has also been sent to the Election Commission of India informing that the rank and file of the NCP is with party chief Sharad Pawar.

Sule, Jayant Patil are contacting all 53 MLAs

NCP national spokesperson Clyde Crasto also claimed that the party working president Supriya Sule and state unit chief Jayant Patil are contacting all the 53 MLAs and the picture will become clearer by Monday.

Ajit Pawar took oath as Deputy CM in the Shiv Sena-BJP government on Sunday afternoon, while eight other MLAs of NCP were sworn in as ministers.

However, sources said a letter submitted to Raj Bhavan claim that Ajit Pawar enjoys the support of more than 40 MLAs and over six of nine MLCs of his party.

"Ajit Pawar has the support of more than 40 MLAs and more than six MLCs. A letter of support of these legislators was given to Raj Bhavan," a source said.

Most of the MLAs will return: Jayant Patil

NCP state chief Jayant Patil said, “These people had not told anyone that they were leaving the party. We have also written to the Election Commission about this. What the MLAs did cannot be accepted.

Patil has said, "We believe that most of the MLAs will return to the party and we will adopt them again."

After the rebellion of Ajit Pawar, the NCP has elected Jitendra Awhad as the Leader of the Opposition. Jitendra also reached the assembly speaker late on Sunday night with his appointment letter.

After this major political reshuffle, Sharad Pawar had said on Sunday, "MLAs and all senior leaders will sit together to decide on any action against the rebel leaders. Being the president, I had appointed Praful Patel and Sunil Tatkare to important posts but they did not fulfill their responsibilities. So, I have to take some action against them."

Will contest all future elections on NCP's name and symbol: Ajit

Addressing reporters after taking oath as deputy CM, Ajit Pawar had maintained that there was no split in the NCP and that they would contest all future elections on the NCP's name and symbol.

"All the elected representatives of the party have supported the decision to join the government," he had claimed.

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