Pune: Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar on Friday met NCP chief Sharad Pawar here, prompting speculation in state political circles.
Sharad Pawar’s daughter and NCP Lok Sabha member Supriya Sule said the meeting was not a political one.
This is the second such meeting between the uncle and nephew after the Ajit Pawar-led group joined the Eknath Shinde-led government in Maharashtra in July.
Friday’s hour-long meeting took place at the house of Prataprao Pawar, brother of the 83-year-old Sharad Pawar and owner of Sakaal media group.
Sule said Pratap Pawar’s wife is unwell and the Pawar family members gathered at his house on Friday for that purpose. “Due to her illness, it won’t be possible for the entire family to attend the Pawar family’s Diwali get-together,” she added.
“Though we have different political ideologies, we maintain our personal relations. There is a difference between professional and personal life. Every year, members from the Pawar family gather at Baramati for Diwali celebrations. However, this year my aunty is unwell, so we planned to visit her residence,” Sule said.
NCP leader Ankush Kakde, who belongs to the Ajit Pawar group, said doctors have advised the Deputy CM, who is recovering from dengue, complete rest, and asked him to stay away from big gatherings to avoid infection.
State cooperation minister Dilip Walse Patil, who belongs to the Ajit Pawar group, also met Sharad Pawar in Pune earlier on Friday. He said there was nothing political in his meeting with the NCP founder.
“It was a scheduled meeting to discuss issues of the Rayat Shikshan Sanstha, an educational institute headed by Sharad Pawar sahib,” the minister told reporters later.
NCP sources said after meeting his uncle in Pune, Ajit Pawar left for Delhi, apparently to meet Union home minister Amit Shah.
Ajit Pawar has staked claim over the name and symbol of Nationalist Congress Party, founded by Sharad Pawar.
The Sharad Pawar-led group has informed the Election Commission that the Ajit Pawar-led faction has submitted over 20,000 fraudulent affidavits to the poll panel to stake claim over the party, the sources said.
(Published 10 November 2023, 16:50 IST)