New twist in Maharashtra political tale?

CM Eknath Shinde cancels programme with President Droupadi Murmu; Sources say there is unrest in his party following entry of Ajit Pawar and his supporters into Maharashtra government

| Updated: 06 July, 2023 12:38 am IST
Maharashtra CM Eknath Shinde

NEW DELHI: The game of politics in Maharashtra continued to throw new episodes with added twists and turns.

On Wednesday, Maharashtra Chief minister Eknath Shinde cancelled all his programmes, including one with the President of India, Droupadi Murmu, in Nagpur.

The move set tongues wagging as sources told The New Indian that CM Shinde had to take the decision to pacify the unrest in his party. Apparently, not all Shiv Sena leaders are comfortable with the idea of Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader Ajit Pawar joining the Maharashtra government along with eight others.

As the talks of Shiv Sena leaders returning to Uddhav Thackeray gained ground, CM Shinde held a meeting with the leaders of his faction and also addressed a meeting of his party workers.

President Droupadi Murmu was in state for the 10th convocation of Gondwana University at Gadchiroli. She was also there to inaugurate the Cultural Centre of Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan at Koradi, Nagpur.

As per the protocol, CM Shinde should have been present with Governor Ramesh Bais, Union minister Nitin Gadkari and Deputy Chief minister Devendra Fadnavis. But instead, he rushed to Mumbai, skipping the function with President Murmu, to pacify workers of his faction at his residence.

Speculations are also abuzz that CM Shinde himself is not very comfortable with the idea of NCP in the Maharashtra government. Interestingly, CM Shinde and his supporters rebelled against Uddhav Thackeray, citing their opposition to joining hands with the NCP, whom they claimed to be hands in glove with corruption.

Interestingly, during his address to his supporters earlier in the day, Ajit Pawar made his intentions clear about aspiring to become the CM of the state.

“I got all the love from you. I became Deputy CM five times. It’s a record. But I am stuck at Dy CM only. I also wish to lead the state, be the CM,” Ajit Pawar had said.

Sources told The New Indian that the statement led to unrest within CM Shinde’s party as they share a frosty relationship with the NCP. There are also reports of discontent within the government as Ajit Pawar and his camp are demanding meaty portfolios like home, finance, PWD, irrigation, cooperation, housing and revenue.

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