In a stringent action against rebel party leader Ajit Pawar, the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) on Saturday evening removed him as the NCP legislative party leader at a party meeting in Mumbai.
State NCP chief Jayant Patil will have all the constitutional rights till the next legislature party leader is elected, the official Twitter handle of NCP said.
Ajit Pawar who is the NCP chief Sharad Pawar's nephew was elected as the legislature party leader on October 30, following the results of the Maharashtra Assembly election.
However, after Ajit joined hands with the BJP to form the government in Maharashtra and took oath as the deputy chief minister of the state early on Saturday morning, he was removed as the party assembly chief and his right to issue a whip was also revoked. The party has now authorized Sharad Pawar and Jayant Patil to decide its stand in the light of the developments.
The development came as a shock to Congress, Shiv Sena and Sharad Pawar-led faction of NCP as NCP, Shiv Sena and Congress were seemingly about to finalise a power-sharing arrangement between them to form the government in Maharashtra.
However, NCP chief Sharad Pawar has said that some MLAs of his party were cheated into attending the early morning oath ceremony in which his nephew Ajit Pawar was sworn in along with the BJP's Devendra Fadnavis. He further claimed that Ajit Pawar's decision was his own and the party neither supports it or endorses it.