New Delhi: NCP chief Sharad Pawar asserted on Tuesday that an alliance with the Shiv Sena was "not difficult", compared to a tie-up with the BJP, and said his nephew Ajit Pawar had rebelled against the party as he was "totally unhappy" with the way the talks were going on with the Congress in Maharashtra.
Seen as the architect of the alliance between the avowedly secular Congress-NCP and the Shiv Sena, an aggressive proponent of Hindutva for decades, Pawar said there was "perfect understanding" among the ideologically diverse allies and expressed confidence that the Uddhav Thackeray-led Maharashtra government would complete its term.
Speaking about his talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) chief told NDTV that he conveyed to the PM that it would not be possible for his party to work with the BJP.
"For us, it was not difficult to work with the Sena as compared to the BJP. That was not the route we could have taken," he said.
Asked about Ajit Pawar's decision to join hands with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), before a lack of support from NCP MLAs forced him to return to his party, the senior Pawar said, "He (Ajit) came back from that discussion between us and the Congress and he was not very happy. He was totally unhappy. In that connection, he ultimately took that extreme decision."
In an early morning development on November 23, Devendra Fadnavis was sworn-in as the Maharashtra chief minister and Ajit Pawar as his deputy.
"But he (Ajit) realised that it was not the correct decision and that is why he came early morning the next day, saw me and just withdrew from all this," Pawar said.
He, however, added that his nephew had a sizeable following in the NCP, but declined to comment on whether Ajit Pawar would get the deputy chief minister's post in the new government in Maharashtra.
This story has been published from a wire agency feed without modifications to the text. Only the headline has been changed.