Maharashtra minister Sudhir Mungantiwar has claimed it was necessary to get NCP leader Ajit Pawar’s support in 2019 to teach a lesson to Shiv Sena (UBT) leader Uddhav Thackeray, in an apparent reference to the alliance formed by BJP leader Devendra Fadnavis and Pawar at that time.
The Devendra Fadnavis-Ajit Pawar government formed in a hush-hush ceremony in November 2019 after the state Assembly elections had lasted for three days.
Later, Uddhav Thackeray became the chief minister of the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government, which comprised his party, the NCP and the Congress.
Thackeray had snapped ties with long-term ally Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) over the issue of sharing the chief ministerial post.
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”The kind of new political arrangement Uddhav Thackeray brought in at that time, to teach Thackeray a lesson it was necessary to get support from NCP’s Ajit Pawar,” BJP leader Mungantiwar told Loksatta newspaper on Saturday.
Asked about the BJP leader’s comments, Fadnavis said, “I have not heard personally what Mungantiwar said. It will not be appropriate to make any comment on his statement.” When reporters queried Sanjay Raut about Mungantiwar’s comments, the Shiv Sena (UBT) leader said, “Nobody gives Mungantiwar any importance in his own party. What is the point of asking us about his comments.” There was speculation recently that Ajit Pawar might join the BJP camp, but he and NCP chief Sharad Pawar dismissed such rumours.