New Delhi: Sulking Bharatiya Janata Party leader Gopinath Munde on Wednesday ruled out the decision of quitting from the party. However, sources claim that Munde’s step was an aftermath of the rejection faced by the Centre in giving him a Cabinet berth. Observers also deem that NCP leader Sharad Pawar’s stronghold in Marathwada region played a crucial factor in preventing Munde from joining the Congress.

According to sources, BJP’s deputy leader in the Lok Sabha, Munde on Tuesday night met Congress leaders but failed to reach any consensus as the Centre did not agree to book a Cabinet seat for him.

Actually, Marathwada is considered to be the NCP’s fort and Munde being a prominent leader from the same region, Congress leaders like Vilasrao Deshmukh, Ashok Chavan and Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan wanted to bring him under their fold. However, the whole process was stalled on the issue of granting him a Cabinet seat in the Parliament.

Sources also think that Pawar factor could also have played an important role in downplaying Munde. Several believe that Pawar’s wish to keep Munde away from Congress is another reason for his not joining the ruling government.

Notably, when rebellious Andhra Pradesh leader Jagan Mohan Reddy wanted to join the Congress, it was Pawar who stopped him from joining the party.

JPN/Bureau