Amid Maharashtra government tussle, Sharad Pawar-Narendra Modi meet fuels speculation

Updated: Nov 20, 2019, 12:29 IST | Dharmendra Jore | New Delhi

Pawar has got his major ally Congress to talk terms with the Sena to form a government in the state that has been put under the President's Rule.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi and NCP chief Sharad Pawar.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and NCP chief Sharad Pawar.

While he is attempting to dislodge the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) from Maharashtra by getting his party and the Congress to side with Shiv Sena, Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) chief Sharad Pawar fuelled speculations by seeking appointment with Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday afternoon. The two are expected to meet within a few hours in New Delhi.

Pawar has got his major ally Congress to talk terms with the Sena to form a government in the state that has been put under the President's Rule because the pre-poll allies – BJP and Sena – could not reach undertaking for post-poll coalition. Sena wants the CM's post, which the new formation of three parties could make available.

The talks have shifted to New Delhi with Congress president Sonia Gandhi dealing personally with the matter in consultation with senior leadership. The state Congress leaders would meet the national panel after which a formal format would be made for tri-party axis's consideration.

However, Pawar's meeting with the PM, presumably to make the head of the nation aware of the farm crisis in Maharashtra, set tongues wagging in the political circles. The meeting came two days after Modi praised NCP for following the parliamentary decorum. The two have talked openly about their friendship in the past, and also lashed out at each other in poll campaigns. The Enforcement Directorate's (ED) action against Pawar has soured the relationship further, with Pawar out to avenge the move which his supporters term as misuse of power.

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