Sharad Pawar meets Sonia
New Dehi: Sulking NCP leader Sharad Pawar, who is believed to have resigned from the Union Cabinet aggrieved over a variety of issues, on Friday met UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi.
Mr. Pawar and NCP leader Praful Patel were on Thursday believed to have resigned from the Union Cabinet upset over a variety of issues, including No. 2 slot for Mr. Pawar.
Ms. Gandhi’s meeting with Mr. Pawar comes ahead of the Congress core group meeting on Friday evening, which is expected to take stock of the situation.
Mr. Pawar is also believed to be hurt over the lack of consultations by Congress with allies, including NCP, and its reluctance to include the party in crucial Cabinet panels like Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) or even being considered for the post of the Leader of the House in Lok Sabha following the resignation of Pranab Mukherjee.
After presenting a picture of unity till the end of polling in presidential election on Thursday, Mr. Pawar, Agriculture Minister and Mr. Patel, Heavy Industries Minister, had kept away from the Cabinet meeting chaired by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and instead met in the house of Mr. Pawar at the same time with some other party leaders.
The trigger for NCP’s sulk appears to be denial of No. 2 slot in the Cabinet to Mr. Pawar, which has apparently been given to Defence Minister A.K. Antony.