01 November, 2020

Maharashtra Powerplay! Why You Just Can't Keep Ajit Pawar Away From Political Spotlight

Ajit Pawar was sworn in as Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister twice in a short span. He now leads the bunch of NCP MLAs who bagged the lion's share of major ministries like home and finance

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Ajit Pawar (left) at his swearing-in, with Uddhav Thackeray
Photograph by Getty Images
Maharashtra Powerplay! Why You Just Can't Keep Ajit Pawar Away From Political Spotlight
outlookindia.com
2020-01-10T16:36:46+05:30

Any politician would envy Ajit Pawar’s luck. In a little over a month, the 60-year-old NCP leader was sworn in twice as deputy CM of Maharashtra—first, as a BJP ally in the Devendra Fadnavis government that lasted barely three days in November, and now as second-in-command in an anti-BJP Maharashtra Vikas Aghadi (MVA) ministry led by Uddhav ­Thackeray of the Shiv Sena.

If anybody sought to write a political obituary of the seven-time MLA from Baramati who defied his uncle and party president Sharad Pawar not long ago, staging a midnight coup to form the BJP-NCP government during the days of ­uncertainty after the October 21 assembly elections, it was premature. He was sworn in again as deputy CM on December 30 in the MVA government, with Sharad Pawar’s apparent blessings.

It was, however, no surprise to see Ajit taking oath as the deputy CM—fourth time in his career—when CM Uddhav ­finally expanded his ministry on December 30 after procrastinating for more than a month since taking the reins of the state government. On...

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