Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar, who along with several loyalist MLAs recently rebelled against his uncle and Nationalist Congress Party patriarch Sharad Pawar to join the BJP-led government in Maharashtra, today paid a surprise visit to the latter along with all NCP ministers a day before the commencement of monsoon session of the Maharashtra Assembly.
“Today we met our God and our leader Sharad Pawar to take his blessings,” Praful Patel said as the rebels emerged from the meeting.
“We came here without asking for any appointment. We understood Sharad Pawar reached here for a meeting and that’s why we all came here to take his blessings,” he said.
Mr Patel, a long-time confidante of the NCP chief, whose betrayal reportedly hurt senior Pawar the most, said he also requested Sharad Pawar that all of them respect him a lot but NCP should be together, and even he should think properly about this and help them in the future.
“Sharad Pawar didn’t reply to us, he just kept on listening to what we were saying and after meeting him, we are going back,” he said.
Ajit Pawar, after a meeting with NCP leaders loyal to him at his residence Devgiri Bungalow, headed to the YB Chavan Cente to meet Sharad Pawar.
Jayant Patil, who was in the meeting with opposition parties ahead of the monsoon session, was also called to YB Chavhan by Supriya Sule.
All the nine MLAs who took the oath along with Praful Patel and Sunil Tatkare were present in the meeting. Sharad Pawar, Supriya Sule, Jayant Patil, and Jitendra Awhad were also present.
This was the first meeting between Sharad Pawar and the group-led by Ajit Pawar after he rebelled against his uncle and joined the Eknath Shinde government on July 2.
Ajit Pawar two days back also visited Silver Oak, the official residence of the NCP supremo, to meet his aunt Pratibha Pawar after she was discharged from hospital following a surgery at the Breach Candy Hospital in south Mumbai on Friday.
Ajit Pawar is known to be close to his aunt Pratibha. In 2019, she reportedly played a crucial role in bringing him back to the NCP fold after he and Devendra Fadnavis formed a short-lived government post the Assembly polls.
Fondly known as ‘kaki’ among NCP leaders, Pratibha Pawar is often viewed as the matriarch of the party but has never been active in politics.