Ajit Pawar may replace Eknath Shinde as Maharashtra Chief Minister, the state’s opposition leader Vijay Wadettiwar said on Monday.
Wadettiwar said Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader and Deputy Chief Minister Pawar may replace Shinde as the Chief Minister, reported PTI.
Wadettiwar also claimed preparations are on to admit Shinde to a hospital and later replace him on "health grounds", the report said.
He said NCP chief Sharad Pawar and Ajit Pawar, who heads the group of rebel NCP MLAs, met in Pune recently amid speculation about Shinde's likely replacement and in view of "talks among MLAs loyal to Ajit that he could be made the chief minister", it said.
The buzz about the "health" of Shinde, who was at his native village in Satara, grew louder after his supporter and MLA Sanjay Shirsat recently claimed the CM has fallen sick as he works for 24 hours, it added.
"Information is coming out about ongoing preparations to admit Eknath Shinde in a hospital and replace him with a new chief minister," Wadettiwar said, the report mentioned.
The Leader of Opposition in the Maharashtra Assembly also claimed the Chief Minister's Office (CMO) has stated that Shinde is not keeping well, it said.
"I fear that he (Shinde) may be admitted to a hospital for two months and may be replaced on medical grounds. People of Maharashtra are asking whether preparations are on to admit Shinde in a hospital on medical grounds," the senior Congress leader said.
Notably, Shiv Sena (UBT) mouthpiece Saamana also referred to MLA Shirsat's claim about Shinde's "sickness".