In a surprising development, BJP’s Devendra Fadnavis on Saturday was sworn-in as Maharashtra Chief Minister for the second consecutive term while NCP's chief Sharad Pawar's nephew Ajit Pawar was administered oath by Governor BS Koshyari as the deputy chief minister. The news comes as a big surprise as Sharad Pawar last evening had announced a consensus on Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray as CM.
After swearing-in as Maharashtra CM again, Fadnavis said that an economically progressive state like Maharashtra cannot be under President’s rule. He also said that this had to be done for the betterment of the people.
"People had given us a clear mandate, but Shiv Sena tried to ally with other parties after results, as a result, President's rule was imposed. Maharashtra needed a stable govt, not a 'khichdi' govt," Devendra Fadnavis said after taking oath as Maharashtra CM again.
National Conference Party's Ajit Pawar, who sworn in as Fadnavis deputy said: "From result day to this day no party was able to form Govt, Maharashtra was facing many problems including farmer issues, so we decided to form a stable Govt."
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Narendra Modi congratulated Devendra Fadnavis and Nationalist Congress Party's Ajit Pawar on taking oath as Maharashtra Chief Minister and Deputy Chief Minister, respectively.
“Congratulations to @Dev_Fadnavis Ji and @AjitPawarSpeaks Ji on taking oath as the CM and Deputy CM of Maharashtra respectively. I am confident they will work diligently for the bright future of Maharashtra,” Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted.
Union Home Minister Amit Shah also congratulated Fadnavis on taking oath as the CM.
"Mr @Dev_Fadnavis The Chief Minister of Maharashtra and Mr. @AjitPawarSpeaks Heartiest congratulations on swearing-in as the Deputy Chief Minister of the state. I am confident that this government will be continuously committed to the development and welfare of Maharashtra and will set new standards of progress in the state," Amit Shah tweeted.
The surprise swearing-in is being described as a political masterstroke of Sharad Pawar, who on Thursday night had said there was a consensus among the NCP, Congress and Shiv Sena that Uddhav Thackeray should lead the new government.
According to sources, NCP Chief Sharad Pawar was part of discussions for Devendra Fadnavis led Maharashtra Govt formation and he had given his assent to Ajit Pawar.
The BJP, which emerged as the single largest party, could not stake claim to form a government as its ally Shiv Sena remained firm on rotating the Chief Minister's post and equal sharing of Cabinet berths.
Shiv Sena parted its ways with BJP to explore ways to form a government. It, however, failed to prove the support of the required number of MLAs in the time given by state Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari.
The BJP won 105 seats in the 288-member assembly followed by Shiv Sena 56, NCP 54 and Congress 44.