Three days after the winter session of the state legislature was wrapped up, deputy chief minister Ajit Pawar is all set to take over as the state’s finance minister and power minister. On Monday, governor K Sankarnaryanan approved the notification forwarded by chief minister Prithviraj Chavan seeking handover of the departments to Pawar.
Two months ago, when Pawar had resigned the post of deputy chief minister over allegations of corruption in the irrigation scam, Pawar had also relinquished charge of his departments — finance, planning and power.
Pawar made a comeback to power after the state government had published the white paper on irrigation that defended state’s water resources department controlled by him for over a decade of irregularities and corruption. He was sworn into the cabinet just two days before the winter session of the state legislature.
‘Pawar’s resignation was a temporary ploy to distract attention from the scam, nothing else. That’s how NCP had reacted in [Chhagan] Bhujbal’s case in Telgi scam and RR Patil in the case of 26/11 attacks,’’ said a senior minister.
Within the party, the split between the old timers and loyalists of NCP chief Sharad Pawar and the camp loyal to his nephew Ajit is clear. However, for the time being, the uncle-nephew duo seems to be moving in tandem towards a greater party base in 2014 polls.