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Deshmukh returns from Delhi; stalemate over CM’s post

The ongoing political imbroglio over the removal of the Maharastra Chief Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh continues as he returned from Delhi last night without any specific direction from the Congress High Command, sources today said.

“The High Command has not given me any specific instruction on the resignation, which I offered to the Congress Working Committee,” Deshmukh told newspersons here late last night.

Owing moral responsibilty for the recent multiple terror strikes on the financial capital of the country, the Chief Minister had offered his resignation to CWC Chief Sonia Gandhi.

Sources in the Congress today maintained that the party allies in the state along with Party President Sonia Gandhi were still deliberating over the choice of Deshmukh’s successor.

Union Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar’s approval for the chief ministerial candidate is necessary, sources said and added that Pawar had vetoed the names of Minister of State for PMO Prithviraj Chauhan and State Industries Minister Ashok Chauhan, for the most sought after post and has proposed the names of Union Power Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde and Revenue Minister Narayan Rane.

However, Rane is not in the good books of the CWC high command after his recent remarks on Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

Even as the chief minister’s appointment is being delayed, the Nationlist Congress Party (NCP) has also not announced their choice of candidate for the Deputy Chief Minister so far.

Meanwhile, the NCP, in its meeting yesterday, had given all powers to party supremo Sharad Pawar to decide the successor of former Deputy Chief Minister R R Patil.
However, the dilemma is expected to be over tonight or tomorrow morning after the final word from Gandhi.

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