Ajit Pawar has betrayed Sharad Pawar: Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut

The Shiv Sena leader accused Ajit Pawar of being an opportunist and cheating his party and the people of Maharashtra.

Ajit Pawar has betrayed Sharad Pawar: Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut

MUMBAI: Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut on Saturday launched a blistering attack on NCP leader Ajit Pawar over his sudden decision to join hands with the BJP to form a coalition government in Maharashtra, without taking the approval of his party chief and mentor Sharad Pawar.

Speaking to reporters, Raut said, ''NCP chief Sharad Pawar has nothing to do with this, Ajit Pawar has backstabbed the people of Maharashtra.''

The Shiv Sena leader accused Ajit Pawar of being an opportunist and cheating his party and the people of Maharashtra.

"We had an inkling of some such developments since Ajit Pawar never looked us in the eye in our series of meetings... Even Sharad Pawar had harboured some doubts when his nephew (Ajit Pawar) had suddenly quit his Assembly seat just before the October elections," Raut said.

Attacking Ajit Pawar further, Raut said, ''The people of Maharashtra will never forgive him. He will regret his decision of aligning with the BJP throughout his life.''

The Sena MP also slammed the BJP and the state's Governor for misusing power to form a government in the state by hook and crook.

The Sena Rajya Sabha MP added that his party president Uddhav Thackeray and NCP chief Sharad Pawar will hold a meeting later in the day to discuss the issues in detail.

Raut's remarks came minutes after the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) chief Sharad Pawar too disapproved his nephew Ajit's decision to join hands with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).

"I came to know at 7 am today about Ajit Pawar. I did not know before that. I will hold a press conference in some time. Uddhav too will address the media. I will speak elaborately then," the NCP chief said, clarifying that it was not his decision.

''Do not endorse or support Ajit Pawar's decision to support BJP to form government in Maharashtra,'' the NCP supremo said in a tweet. 

In an overnight development, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) turned its tables on its rivals with a faction of Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) breaking away under Sharad Pawar's nephew Ajit Pawar and forming the government under the leader of Devendra Fadnavis in the wee hours of Saturday morning.

The development brought a major twist in the Maharashtra saga as a day earlier it was the senior Pawar who announced that the new Maharashtra government would be led by Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray.

Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leaders gathered at Sharad Pawar residence to discuss the emerging political situation after the formation of BJP-led government in the state.

Meanwhile, the security has been beefed up at the BJP office, NCP office and the CM residence in Mumbai. 

In a big twist, Fadnavis took oath as Maharashtra Chief Minister for the second consecutive term while NCP`s Ajit Pawar took oath as his deputy of the state.

Minutes after taking oath as the Chief Minister of Maharashtra, Devendra Fadnavis said that the state needed a stable and not a khichdi government, apparently hinting to the hectic parleys between the Shiv Sena, NCP and Congress for forming a coalition government.

"People had given us a clear mandate, but Shiv Sena tried to ally with other parties after results, as a result, President's Rule was imposed. Maharashtra needed a stable govt not a 'khichdi' govt," Fadnavis said while speaking to reporters.

The Chief Minister also wholeheartedly thanked the Nationalist Congress Party supremo Sharad Pawar for giving his support and agreeing to form a joint government with the BJP.