Veteran politician Sharad Pawar claimed that no BJP leader has faced action from the Enforcement Directorate since the party has been in power.
On the Election Commission recently recognising the faction led by his nephew Ajit Pawar as the “real” NCP and allotting the party’s poll symbol “clock” to the group, Sharad Pawar said such a situation has never been witnessed in the country and the people will not support such a decision.
Ajit Pawar walked away with a majority of NCP MLAs in the Maharashtra assembly in July last year and joined the Eknath Shinde-led state government.
The poll body allotted “Nationalist Congress Party – Sharadchandra Pawar” as the party name for the group led by Sharad Pawar.
Addressing an event in Pune, Sharad Pawar claimed that misuse of power is evident when anyone opposes the ruling BJP.
“The ED has conducted investigations across the country, with 6,000 cases registered from 2005 to 2023. But, substantial findings were obtained in 25 cases, and 85% of the cases involved political leaders from the Opposition,” he claimed.
“Since the BJP has been in power (from 2014), no leader from the party has faced action from the ED. Moreover, investigations against BJP leaders were halted after the party came to power,” he further claimed at the Aarogya Doot Abhiyan organised by his party in Pune.
Later, asked about the EC’s decision on the NCP name and symbol, the Rajya Sabha member said he had contested his first election on the symbol of a pair of bullocks. Thoughts and ideology are more important than any symbol, he said.
“The EC’s decision is surprising. Our political party was given to other people, such a situation was never witnessed in the country. I believe that people will not support such a decision. We will have a discussion on the new name and symbol on Monday,” he said.
Asked about the attack on journalist Nikhil Wagle, Sharad Pawar said a person was attacked in Pune and a car was vandalised.
“It is a worrying situation. It is an unfortunate incident and the state and the Centre should take note of this,” he said.
To a query on the Baramati Lok Sabha constituency, he said, “I am not going to contest the upcoming elections. People from Baramati are straight and simple. They will make the right decision.” Baramati in Pune district is the political turf of the Pawars.
Asked about the Citizenship Amendment Act, Mr Pawar said, “Implementing the CAA is not right. Let’s see what happens next week.” Union Home Minister Amit Shah said the CAA, enacted in 2019, will be implemented before the Lok Sabha polls after the rules are issued.
The CAA seeks to grant Indian citizenship to persecuted non-Muslim migrants, including Hindus, Sikhs, Jains, Buddhists, Parsis, and Christians, from Bangladesh, Pakistan, and Afghanistan who entered India before December 31, 2014.
On seat-sharing talks for the upcoming elections, Sharad Pawar said, “Talks are underway on seat-sharing with the (Prakash Ambedkar-led) Vanchit Bahujan Aghadi. We are asking them for their programmes ahead of the Lok Sabha polls.”
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)