'Can't I even go to the washroom..?' Miffed Ajit Pawar to media

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Mumbai, Sep 12 : A day after reports emerged that he had quit his Nationalist Congress Party's convention in New Delhi midway in a huff, a miffed Maharashtra Leader of Opposition Ajit Pawar on Monday said that he had merely "gone to the washroom". He dismissed the news reports - which went on to suggest internal strife within the party at its two-day national conclave - as absolutely misleading and speculative. "I had been sitting on the stage since morning. It was natural for any human being to feel the urge to go to the washroom. But the media has blown it out of proportions. Can't I even step into the washroom?" an annoyed Ajit Pawar said. The Saturday-Sunday convention saw Sharad Pawar, 82, re-elected as NCP President for a record 8th consecutive term since the party was founded in 1999. At the height of the deliberations on Sunday, Ajit Pawar, the nephew of Pawar, was seen suddenly getting up and walking off just as state NCP President Jayant Patil started his address, fuelling intense political rumours of a chasm in the top leadership. Clearing the air on Monday, Ajit Pawar chided the media and asked them to stick to reporting only facts without resorting to political kite-flying. "I was there to speak on state-level issues. It was a national convention and so the state President Jayant Patil also spoke," he pointed out, reiterating that he was not upset in any manner. As per reports, NCP General Secretary Praful Patel had announced that Ajit Pawar will speak before Sharad Pawar's address. However, when Ajit Pawar's turn came, he was absent from the dais and by the time he returned from the washroom, Pawar Sr. had already started speaking, leading to the rumour-mongering. /IANS




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