The rumour on the Pankaja Munde, daughter of late Gopinath Munde, switching side from BJP to Sena-Congress-NCP camp died down after she posted ‘lotus’ on her Facebook page.
The speculation of her switching side came after she removed her party’s name from her Twitter bio. But Pankaja Munde soon cleared the air on Tuesday by posting an image of a 'lotus' (BJP symbol) on her Facebook page along with paying tributes to India's first president Rajendra Prasad on his birth anniversary. The 'About' section of her Facebook account also mentioned BJP as her political affiliation.
On Sunday evening, Munde triggered speculation about her next political move with a Facebook post on her "future journey" in view of the “changed political scenario” in Maharashtra. On Monday, giving more to the speculators, she removed "BJP" from her Twitter bio and description of her political journey.
The BJP leader’s father, late Gopinath Munde, helped the BJP gain support of the Other Backward Classes (OBCs) in Maharashtra and a party leader said if Munde leaves the BJP, “a section of the OBC workers will also drift away from the party”.
While Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut claimed that many leaders were keen on joining the Uddhav Thackeray-led party, Maharashtra BJP president Chandrakant Patil on Monday refuted Raut's claim and dismissed reports that Pankaja Munde might quit the BJP. The leaders of BJP also visited Pankaja Munde to discuss and sort out her problems.
On Monday night, Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, who also heads the Shiv Sena, thanked Pankaja Munde for congratulating him on becoming the CM on November 28. In the October 21 state Assembly elections, Pankaja Munde lost to her cousin and NCP rival Dhananjay Munde in a bitter contest from Parli seat in Beed district.
In her Facebook post on Sunday, she invited her followers to Gopinathgad in Beed district on December 12 on the occasion of her late father birth anniversary. "Looking at the changed political scenario in state, there is a need to think and decide the way ahead. I need time for some 8-10 days to communicate with myself. Our future journey needs to be decided against the backdrop of current political changes," she wrote in her Facebook post in Marathi. "What to do next? Which path to be taken? What can we give to people? What is our strength? What are expectations of people? I will think about all these aspects and come before you on December 12," she posted.