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Agatha Sangma meets Pawar, offers to quit govt

July 23, 2012 16:15 IST
Agatha Sangma, who had campaigned for her father P A Sangma in the Presidential polls, on Monday offered to quit as minister of state for rural development.

NCP sources said that Agatha met party chief Sharad Pawar ahead of a meeting of the party leaders and expressed her readiness to quit the government.

The talk in party circles was that Agatha could be facing trouble with the NCP leadership receiving complaints against her from party units in Chhattisgarh and Odisha that she campaigned for her father.

While the NCP backed UPA nominee Pranab Mukhrjee, Sangma was the Bharatiya Janata Party-backed opposition candidate for the top post.

Reports had it that the Agatha issue was likely to come up before the NCP meeting.

Agatha is a member of the Lok Sabha from Tura, a seat represented by her father several times.

Sangma, a founder member of the NCP, resigned from the party to contest the Presidential elections. Immediately after he declared his intent to contest the election, Pawar had made it clear that there was no question of his party going against the decision of the United Progressive Alliance.

Agatha is said to have accompanied her father to Odisha to seek support for him from chief minister Naveen Patnaik. She had also attended a function of tribal leaders in Bastar region of Chhattisgarh.

A party leader, however, sought to give a different twist to Agatha's offer. He said that Agatha told Pawar that she would follow the party line after he and Patel decided to pull out of the government and support it from outside in protest against the way the party was treated by the Congress.

NCP sources said that Pawar will not be attending the dinner being hosted by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in honour of outgoing President Pratibha Patil.

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