Mumbai: Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) chief Sharad Pawar said on Saturday that his nephew Ajit Pawar’s decision to lend support to BJP to form government in Maharashtra was “indiscipline” and “against the party lines”.
He also cautioned party MLAs backing Ajit Pawar that they may lose their membership under the anti-defection law.
Pawar, who addressed a joint press conference with Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray, said no NCP leader or worker is in favour of BJP-NCP government.
“Ajit Pawar’s decision is against the party line and is indiscipline,” he said.
The press conference came hours after BJP leader Devendra Fadnavis and NCP leader Ajit Pawar were sworn in as Chief Minister and Deputy Chief Minister in a dramatic early morning development. The President’s Rule in the state was revoked hours earlier.
Pawar said NCP MLAs who have landed support to BJP or were thinking of doing so in the future will lose their membership under “anti-defection” law.
“All the MLAs who are going must know that there is an anti-defection law and the possibility of them losing their assembly membership is high. Even the voters of their respective constituency will also be angry with them,” he said.
NCP MLA Rajendra Shingane, who was present at the presser, said he went to Raj Bhavan but was not aware that oath-taking ceremony was to take place.
“Ajit Pawar had called me to discuss something and from there I was taken with other MLAs to Raj Bhavan. Before we could understand the oath ceremony was complete. I rushed to Pawar Sahab and told him that I am with him,” he said.
Pawar said Congress, Shiv Sena and NCP had come together to form a government. “We have the numbers to form the government. Several independent are also with us,” Pawar added. NCP won 54 seats while Shiv Sena got 56 and Congress 44.
The BJP, which emerged as the single largest party with 105 seats in 288-member assembly, could not stake claim to form a government as its ally Shiv Sena remained firm on a rotating Chief Minister.