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Pankaja signals intent to rebel against Fadnavis

Pankaja Munde on Thursday said that the party wants the 'old BJP back', referring to the period before Devendra Fadnavis took over the party's leadership in the state.

ET Bureau|
Dec 12, 2019, 03.50 PM IST
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MUMBAI: In a virtual revolt in the BJP against the leadership of Devendra Fadnavis in the state, Pankaja Munde on Thursday said that the party wants the 'old BJP back', referring to the period before Devendra Fadnavis took over the party's leadership in the state. She also declared that she would resign from the BJP's core committee and would henceforth work among the party workers.

Addressing a highly anticipated rally today to commemorate her late father Gopinath Munde's birth anniversary in Beed, Pankaja slammed Fadnavis without taking his name.

"The party does not belong to a single person...the Sangha culture has not percolated to a single person", said Pankaja clearly targeting Fadnavis who had in the last five years emerged as the biggest leader in the party.

The BJP leader claimed that the party needs to give a voice to leaders like Eknath Khadse who incidentally has been very critical of Fadnavis's leadership. "We need to listen to people like Eknath Khadse...No need to put a tape on your lips and sit (silent). We need people with rebellious idea", said Pankaja. She added that the party needs to be taken to the common man.

She referred to her running fued with Fadnavis and hinted that it could have come due to her expressing ambitions to become the Chief Minister. "What sin have I done if I said that I want to lead the state, what wrong have I done if I said that I want to be the Chief Minister", said Pankaja.

Pankaja's supporters have been claiming that her troubles have been started because Fadnavis has not liked her ambitions of becoming the Chief Minister.

Pankaja said that she would be faithful to the party and that if the party wants, it can take action against her. Pankaja's move against Fadnavis signals a possible consolidation of disgruntled BJP leaders ganging up against the former Chief Minister of the state.

Pankaja also announced that she would form the Gopinath Munde Pratisthan and will tour the state and keep in touch with the people.

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