Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray on Sunday said NCP president Sharad Pawar has an old habit of standing on two stones — keeping his options of power politics open-ended.
He said that Pawar was weighing the option of keeping post-poll option open with NDA but was voted out by the alliance partners supporting the BJP. “Pawar wanted to mend his fences with NDA. So he held a meeting with BJP prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi. When we opposed he retracted and started calling Modi a ‘mass murderer’,” Thackeray told reporters at his residence Matoshree.
“When Pawar disclosed his meeting with Modi, even his party justified. But when it became evident that we were against the alliance, he took a U-turn and started finding faults with Modi. Pawar raked up Gujarat riots to malign Modi’s image,” he said.
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Thackeray reiterated his party’s support to Modi as prime minister candidate. Interestingly, Sena had several times done flip-flops on Modi’s PM candidature through its mouthpiece Saamna. The Sena president wondered why Maharashtra farmers reeled under crisis even when they had the Union Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar representing them at the Centre. He said, “The maximum number of farmers suicides take place in Maharashtra despite Pawar heading the agriculture ministry.”
Taking a dig at Pawar, he said, “It appears he (Pawar) is more interested in contesting MCA polls and keeping away from Lok Sabha election. Why is he staying out of Lok Sabha elections?”
Thackeray also criticised the state government’s decision to regularise the slums till 2000 ahead of the polls.
NCP spokesperson Nawab Malik said, “The Sena should explain its own flip flop on Modi before attacking NCP leaders. The NCP is committed to its secular politics. Pawar has explained he met Modi in the capacity of union agriculture minister meeting chief minister. There was nothing political about the meeting.”