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HT Correspondent and G Mohiuddin Jeddy, Hindustan Times
Mumbai/Navi Mumbai, April 12, 2013
Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) has ruled out resignation of Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar following the offensive remarks made by him on drought and load shedding, even as Congress distanced itself from the controversy. NCP state party president Madhukar Pichad said there was no question of Pawar’s resignation since he had already apologised to the people.

“That chapter is closed for us. There is no question of DCM resigning. There is no need for calling any meeting with MLAs to discuss this. Opposition is playing politics over this and we will respond to this when the time comes,’’ said Pichad.

Maharashtra Navnirman Sena chief Raj Thackeray had made worse comments in the past, he said.

Pichad’s statement came after a meeting held by party chief Sharad Pawar, MP Supriya Sule, rural development minister Jayant Patil, among others,on the party’s women wing that is currently being mentored by Sule.

Meanwhile, state Congress chief Manikrao Thakre said the NCP leadership should take a call on Pawar’s resignation and Congress had no say in the matter.

He said such controversial statements should be avoided.

He was speaking at a press conference held at the two-day state level Congress spokesperson training camp that began on Friday at Agri Koli Bhavan in Nerul.

He said there was no need for the chief minister to apologise.