Days after Prime Minister Narendra Modi said the Pawar family was feuding over who gets to control the NCP, members of the family hit back at him and accused the Prime Minister of trying to “divert” the public’s attention by making such statements.
On Monday, at an election rally in Wardha, Modi had claimed that NCP chief Sharad Pawar was “losing his grip over the party” and his nephew Ajit Pawar was trying to take control.
At a rally in Pune on Wednesday, ahead of NCP candidate Supriya Sule filing her nomination for the Baramati seat and Congress candidate Mohan Joshi filing his nomination for the Pune seat, Ajit Pawar said, “Modi should not be worried about the Pawar family. If he wants to show concern, then Modi should be worried about farmers and unemployed citizens. He should clarify the doubts on the price of purchase of Rafale aircraft. His strategy is to divert the attention of citizens”.
He said the Prime Minister of the country “comes down to Maharashtra and talks about the Pawar family”. “I am surprised as the PM should be talking about the common man, but he is talking about the Pawar family. We are capable of talking about our family,” he said, adding that it was expected that Modi would speak on the assurances he had made five years ago, during the 2014 Lok Sabha campaign.
Instead, said the deputy chief minister, “They are talking about the mistakes made by us. We admit our mistakes as those who work also make mistakes. Those who don’t work never make mistakes”.
On Tuesday, Sharad Pawar had also hit out at Modi, saying, “The NCP doesn’t belong to any individual or a couple of people. The party belongs to lakhs of workers in the state and at the Centre. All of them are capable of taking care of the party so Modi should not be worried about NCP.”
He had also hailed the Gandhi family and said it had made major contributions towards the progress of the country. “Not much should be expected from Modi, who has a grudge against the Gandhi family and he has been stooping low to criticise them,” said the NCP chief.
Sule had also hit back at Modi over his comments, saying, “The Prime Minister was expected to speak on important issues and development. It was unexpected of him to comment on the Pawar family and it is unfortunate that those, who do not respect the seniors in their party, are speaking.”
The Baramati MP had added that any decision in the NCP was taken only after consultations with senior party leaders and workers.