Ajit Pawar is back. The NCP top brass informed chief minister Prithviraj Chavan on Thursday that they want him to be re-inducted in the cabinet. Governor K Sankaranarayanan has been asked to reschedule his Pune tour in view of the swearing-in at 9.30am.
Pawar will get back the power and finance portfolios as well as the deputy chief minister’s post.
NCP sources say party chief Sharad Pawar was under considerable pressure to ensure that his nephew was re-inducted in the state cabinet. Though Pawar wanted to keep Ajit at bay for some more time, he could not ignore the fact that 53 MLAs were with his nephew. And that they too had offered to resign when he had quit the state cabinet.
The process of the re-induction started two days ago, when key leaders met Sharad Pawar in Delhi. Ajit Pawar was informed about his re-induction on Thursday afternoon.
Ajit Pawar had put in his papers on September 25 in the wake of irrigation scams where his role as the water resources minister was under the scanner.
Ajit Pawar was the water resources minister from 1999 to 2010 — the period when the alleged irregularities occurred.
While resigning from the deputy chief minister’s post, Pawar had said he wanted a fair and impartial inquiry into the scam.
After the white paper, in which the status of the ongoing irrigation projects was described in detail, was presented to the state cabinet last week, the pressure on Sharad Pawar started building up.
Supporters of Ajit Pawar kept clamouring for his re-induction because the paper had no charges against him.