New Delhi: Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar on Tuesday morning visited Mumbai's Trident Hotel, where Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Maharashtra in-charge Bhupendra Yadav was also spotted. However, it is not clear if the two leaders met and had any discussions on the current political scenario in the state.
The development took place just a few hours before the Supreme Court will announce its decision on a petition challenging the government formation by the BJP in Maharashtra.
The newly-formed alliance between the Congress, Shiv Sena and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) had submitted the joint petition before the SC against the decision of Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari to invite the BJP to form government in the state.
On Saturday, in a surprise political development, BJP's Devendra Fadnavis took oath as Maharashtra CM for the second consecutive term while NCP leader Ajit Pawar was sworn-in as his deputy.
The swearing-in ceremony happened at a time when the talks between Congress, NCP and Shiv Sena over government formation in Maharashtra had seemingly reached the final stage. NCP supremo Sharad Pawar had, in fact, claimed that there was a consensus on Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray as chief minister of the alliance government.
The NCP, meanwhile, is trying to woo back Ajit Pawar, the rebel leader and Deputy CM. On Monday, former Deputy CM Chhagan Bhujbal visited Ajit Pawar's home and tried to convince him to return to the NCP fold. He was joined by at least two other senior leaders and former Ministers - Dilip Walse-Patil and Sunil Tatkare - who were closeted with Pawar for around three hours in his Mantralaya office to discuss and sort out issues.
"We had a long meeting with him and are trying to convince him to come back. There's no definite commitment from his side, but we are hopeful of a positive response," Bhujbal told media persons.
NCP sources said it was the "final effort" by the party and thereafter it will be left to the sulking Ajit Pawar's conscience and decision.
On Sunday, some top leaders, including NCP state chief Jayant Patil, had called on Ajit Pawar twice at his home to win him over, ahead of the crucial vote of confidence in the Assembly. Simultaneously, members of the Pawar clan, including Rohit Pawar, the newly elected legislator and grandnephew of NCP chief Sharad Pawar, and MP Supriya Sule-Pawar, also issued appeals on social media, extending an olive branch to Ajit Pawar.
Meanwhile, in another crucial development, Jayant Patil was on Tuesday elected NCP legislative party leader.