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Sharad Pawar secures resignations of NCP ministers

Major revamp anticipated in Nationalist Congress Party at all levels

Gulf News

Mumbai: In a surprise move, Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) chief Sharad Pawar has secured the resignations of all ministers from his party in the federal government and in the Maharashtra cabinet, a top party official said in Mumbai late on Friday.

Pawar has simultaneously obtained the resignations of certain other key party functionaries, including the state NCP presidents, following a party convention in Mumbai earlier in the day.

Pawar is likely to carry out a major reshuffle in the party soon, the official, requesting anonymity said.

Top party officials, when contacted on Friday night, declined to comment on the developments on-the-record.

The exercise of securing the resignations of all party ministers at the federal level and in Maharashtra could potentially pave the way for new nominees to cabinet posts.

While on the one hand, some ministers may by drafted in for party work prior to next year’s Lok Sabha and Maharashtra assembly elections, other key party functionaries may be inducted into the cabinet, the official said.

“This is an internal matter of the NCP. The party chief will decide whether new faces should be inducted into the central and Maharashtra cabinets and assigning fresh responsibilities to various leaders,” the official added.

The developments assume significance amid speculation of cabinet reshuffles both in the federal government and in Maharashtra.

The NCP is a key constituent of the ruling United Progressive Alliance at the centre and is a partner in the Democratic Front government in Maharashtra.

The NCP developments were followed by reports of meetings among Congress leaders in the state and the federal level and the possibility of Maharashtra chief minister Prithviraj Chavan travelling to New Delhi to meet top party leaders.