New Delhi: A month after quitting NCP (Nationalist Congress Party), senior leader Tariq Anwar joined the Congress after a meeting with party president Rahul Gandhi at his Tughlaq Lane residence on Saturday. Anwar had resigned from the NCP on September 28 after party chief Sharad Pawar’s ‘defence’ of Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the Rafale fighter jet deal.

“Our (NCP) national president Sharad Pawar indirectly gave a clean chit to PM, in a statement on Rafale deal. The Prime Minister is completely involved in the deal. The Opposition is demanding constitution of JPC for a probe in it. I’m upset with his statement,” Anwar had said, after his resignation from the party. Anwar, who was the NCP’s only Lok Sabha member in Bihar  was considered a close aide of Pawar.

Earlier last month, Pawar, while speaking to a Marathi news channel, on the Rafale deal, had said,“People do not have doubts over Prime Minister Modi’s intentions”. He had also said that the demand that all of the deal details be shared “didn’t make sense”. The statement was quoted by BJP leaders, including party president Amit Shah, to highlight Congress’ failure to find support on the issue.

Later, NCP issued a statement and asserted that Pawar’s opinion need not be construed as his party’s clean chit to the PM.

Anwar, a former president of Congress’s Bihar unit, had quit the grand old party along with Pawar in 1990s, opposing Sonia Gandhi taking over as AICC president on grounds of her foreign origin.