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Pawar Vs Pawar: Whose Time It Will Be Anyway

Although NCP founder Sharad Pawar has once again adopted a dual stand over the ‘split’ in his party, his nephew Ajit has reiterated that the majority of the party workers and MLAs are with his faction, which is the ‘real’ NCP. Pawar has maintained before the Election Commission (EC) that there is no split in his party and that some of his party colleagues have adopted ‘a different stand.’ Disregarding this argument, EC has decided to begin a hearing over the rival claims from 6 October.  Ajit, now Maharashtra’s deputy chief minister, has claimed that 41 of the 52 NCP MLAs are behind him. On the other hand, Pawar told his supporters that henceforth, his faction will operate as part of the Maha Vikas Aghadi for future elections. His submission before the EC and his assurance to his followers have regenerated confusion about his exact posture. The EC, meanwhile, has informed both that it had concluded that there were two rival groups after considering the matter. The split came to the fore on 30 June when Ajit sought the EC’s recognition of his faction as the real NCP on 3 July, he was sworn in as DCM in the Shinde-Fadnavis government. Since the matter requires a ‘substantive determination’ under the rules, the EC has directed both sides to be present for a personal hearing on October 6.