With a slew of leaders deserting the party, Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) president Sharad Pawar on Sunday said those who were quitting were people who had cases filed against them.
“A lot of people are quitting the party these days. This desertion is because the present rulers are putting pressure on people who have cases against them. If you are completely clean you have nothing to be worried out,” Pawar said while addressing the women’s wing of party in Mumbai.
In the last three months, the NCP has lost six of its 41 MLAs and there are indications of a few more desertions in the coming few days. NCP’s Barshi MLA Dilip Sopal has thrown hints that he too was on the verge of quitting the party to join the Shiv Sena. While senior leaders are quitting, newer entrants to the NCP are also reconsidering their decision. Recent inductee Dhanraj Mahale, who had contested the Lok Sabha election from Dindori on NCP ticket, has quit the party to return to Sena folds.
NCP state president Jayant Patil said the BJP, rather than poaching leaders from opposition parties, should pay emphasis on “empowering its second-rung leaders and activists”.
He also said talks on finalising alliance and seat-sharing with the Congress for the upcoming state assembly elections were on.