I'm unhappy, but will not quit NCP: Datta Meghe

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Nagpur, Mar 17 (UNI) Senior Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader and Rajya Sabha member Datta Meghe has said he was unhappy with the party's leadership over the way it is treating him and some other leaders, especially from Vidarbha region of Maharashtra, but he did not plan to quit the party.

Speaking to newsmen at his residence here today, Mr Meghe said that he would remain with NCP President Sharad Pawar. ''Mr Pawar is my party. He has given me so much that I cannot even think of leaving him. I am with and will remain with the NCP. I will quit only if Mr Pawar tells me to do so,'' a sentimental Meghe said.

The reports in a section of the media to the effect that he had quit were totally incorrect and baseless, he said.

Mr Meghe also said he had sent a detailed letter to Mr Pawar and had sought to discuss with him the issues mentioned therein. ''I handed over the letter in an open envelope to Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister R R Patil at the airport here yesterday,'' he said, but declined to reveal its contents.

''My term in the Rajya Sabha ends next month. I was given to understand that I would be nominated again. However, my name was struck off at the last moment,'' Mr Meghe said, adding, ''I do not know the reason and I do not want to speculate.'' ''It was unfortunate that the party leadership did not find one person fit enough to be recommended for nomination to the Maharashtra Legislative Council. ''Girish Gandhi retired after a truncated term (he was nominated in place of Jogendra Kawade, who resigned in the middle of his term). He could have been sent to the Upper House again for a full term,'' he said.

The NCP should also have made its stand clear on his son Sagar Meghe, who is now a Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) member of the state Legislative Council, the former Maharashtra minister said. ''Sagar's credibility in the BJP has been damaged because of speculation that he could quit to join the NCP and be inducted into the Maharashtra cabinet,'' he added.

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