Resort politics in play as Cong MLAs to fly to Jaipur

NCP President Sharad Pawar. (PTI Photo)

With Maharashtra in a political bind following a coup by NCP's Ajit Pawar who joined hands with the BJP on Saturday, MLAs of the ally Congress are likely to fly to Jaipur on Sunday to ward off any poaching bid, a party leader said on Saturday night.

In a dramatic turn of events earlier in the day, Ajit, nephew of NCP chief Sharad Pawar, joined hands with the BJP and took oath as deputy chief minister at Raj Bhavan while Devendra Fadnavis was sworn in as chief minister for a second term.

Later in the night, Ajit was sacked as the legislative party leader of the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) which had won 54 seats in the assembly polls held in October.

The Congress, the NCP and the Shiv Sena had almost finalised the formation of an alliance government when Ajit made the stunning political move.

"We may go to Jaipur tomorrow. We will be there until the special session of the state Legislative Assembly is convened for newly-elected MLAs to take the oath, the election of Speaker and trust vote," Congress MLA Nana Patole told PTI on Saturday night.

In the 288-member Assembly, the BJP has 105 MLAs, the Sena 56 and the Congress 44.

Patole said all the MLAs of the Congress are together and won't split.

He said though more than 12 hours have passed since Fadnavis was sworn in as the new CM neither the Cabinet meeting was convened nor the special session of the state Legislative assembly was announced.

Patole termed Saturday as a "black day" in the state's history.

Meanwhile, in a related development, Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray met with MLAs of his party at a suburban five-star hotel and discussed the unfolding political scenario.

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