Ajit Pawar, ‘man of the moment’, who Fadnavis said would be in prison after the election
Naturally Corrupt Party (NCP) is how PM Modi had described Nationalist Congress Party. And the video of Maharashtra CM Devendra Fadnavis mocking Ajit Pawar of NCP is again going viral on social media
Overnight developments in Maharashtra goes to prove the old saying that politics makes for strange bedfellows. Not too long back, BJP leaders including Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis were busy abusing NCP leaders as corrupt. In a memorable video, Fadnavis can be heard describing what Ajit Pawar would be doing in prison after the election. He would be, said Fadnavis, ‘ Chakki peesing ( not pissing), and peesing and peesing’, borrowing a colloquial idiom for prisoners doing hard, manual labour.
The video clip doing the rounds can be seen here :
On Saturday morning, however, Fadnavis and Ajit Pawar were sworn in as Maharashtra’s chief minister and deputy chief minister respectively. Irony may have died many deaths, but Ajit ‘ Dada’ Pawar is said to be confident of delivering the required number of MLAs to split the NCP and ensure that BJP and his breakaway group prove their majority on the floor of the House.
Born Anantrao Pawar and affectionately called ‘ Dada’ by people in his constituency, Ajit Pawar (60) has held the reins of the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) after his uncle Sharadrao Pawar (80) indicated his inclination to withdraw from electoral politics. The NCP contested
the 2019 election under his leadership and Ajit Pawar, by virtue of being the organisational head, called the shots. It is, therefore, quite likely that the newly elected MLAs belonging to the NCP owe their allegiance more to Ajit Pawar than to his uncle.
He was elected to Parliament from the family borough of Baramati but vacated the seat for his uncle. He was then elected an MLA in 1991 after holding the reins of the Pune district cooperative society for several years as chairman. In 1992 he was appointed the Minister of State for Agriculture and Power. An MLA elected for six consecutive terms, he was the Deputy Chief Minister in the Congress-NCP Government between 2012 and 2014.
On Saturday morning, he was again back in Mantralaya in Mumbai as Deputy Chief Minister to Devendra Fadnavis of the BJP.
In September this year, weeks before the commencement of the assembly election in Maharashtra, the Enforcement Directorate registered a criminal case against him as one of the accused in the allegedly ₹25,000 Crore scam in the Maharashtra State Cooperative Bank.
The Enforcement Case Information Report (ECIR), equivalent of a police FIR, was registered under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).
The case was based on a Mumbai Police FIR that had named the then directors of the bank, former deputy chief minister of the state Ajit Pawar, and 70 former functionaries.
Mumbai Police had registered the FIR on the directions of the Mumbai High Court. Other accused included Peasants and Workers Party (PWP) leader Jayant Patil and officials from the superseded bank's branches in 34 districts in the state. The accused were accused of causing losses to the tune of ₹1,000 Crore to MSCB between 2007 and 2011.
Ajit Pawar had claimed his innocence then and had resigned his seat as MLA, days before the election, in protest against the ED naming his uncle Sharad Pawar also as an accused.
The Anti-Corruption Bureau of Maharashtra had also named Ajit Pawar as an accused in the ₹70,000 Crore irrigation scam, which allegedly took place during the Congress-NCP Government.