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Hooda out of the woods, fate of Chavan, Gogoi hangs in balance

Hooda out of the woods, fate of Chavan, Gogoi hangs in balance

New Delhi: The fate of Chief Ministers of Maharashtra and Assam hangs in balance while Congress Saturday ruled out change of guard in Haryana even as hectic parleys continued over the party's proposed organizational shake-up in states following its worst-ever drubbing in Lok Sabha polls.

"Anything can happen. No decision has been taken yet. It is fifty fifty," a top party functionary said regarding the possiblity of replacing Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithivraj Chavan who met Congress President Sonia Gandhi this evening capping day-long developments in Congress over the issue.

Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda, who also met Gandhi in the morning, dismissed talks about replacing him as "just rumours" while Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi is arriving here tomorrow and will be meeting the high command on Monday.

Even as the party leadership grappled with the issue of replacing Chavan, the Maharashtra Chief Minister said he has told the party President that the atmosphere of uncertainty is not good for Maharashtra.

"I have apprised the Congress leadership about the atmosphere of uncertainty.....We need to get clarity soon," said Chavan who steered clear of specific questions whether he has been asked to put in his papers.

"No comments" was his cryptic response to such queries. He added he will not discuss with media what he discussed with his party leadership.

At the same time, Chavan said he has been told to attend A K Antony Committee's meeting with leaders of Maharashtra to find out the reasons for the party's debacle in Lok Sabha polls in the state.

"I have been told verbally and have not received any formal communication," said Chavan, who also met Antony, Ghulam Nabi Azad and Ahmed Patel, political secretary to the Congress President. The meeting of Antony with Maharashtra leaders is scheduled on next Saturday.

Hours after meeting the Congress President, Hooda in Sonipat, Haryana, dismissed as "just rumours" speculation of a change of guard in his state and claimed all sections of society are satisfied with the functioning of his government.

Assembly polls are due in Maharashtra and Haryana later this year.

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