After Quitting BJP, Eknath Khadse Joins NCP in Pawar’s Presence

Khadse quit the BJP recently, saying that he was leaving the saffron party “only because of Devendra Fadnavis.”

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Politics
1 min read
File image of Eknath Khadse.
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Former BJP leader and Maharashtra minister Eknath Khadse joined the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) in the presence of party chief Sharad Pawar in Mumbai on Friday, 23 October.

Khadse, a veteran political leader of Maharashtra, quit the BJP recently, saying that he was leaving the saffron party “only because of Devendra Fadnavis.”

The six-time MLA from the Muktainagar constituency said he was targeted by the then chief minister and current Leader of Opposition Fadnavis on trumped up charges which have still not been proven.

“My family and I have been humiliated for four years... I had worked hard to build up the party in the state for 40 years and this is what I had to undergo,” Khadse had told mediapersons.

Uneasy Relationship With Fadnavis

Forced to quit as minister in June 2016, following corruption charges when he was the de facto number two in the Cabinet headed by Fadnavis, Khadse was denied a BJP ticket in the 2019 Assembly elections. Instead, the BJP fielded his daughter Rohini Khadse-Khewalkar, but she lost the polls, after which Khadse's supporters charged Fadnavis with engineering her debacle.

Having once tutored Fadnavis in legislative politics, Khadse was ironically bypassed by the central leadership when the party swept the 2014 legislative elections, with Fadnavis chosen to lead the government.

Since then, they enjoyed an uneasy relationship.

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