Pawar faces family push to fight poll, may not relent

Pune |Tuesday, 2019 9:15:04 PM IST
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A day after Nationalist Congress Party President Sharad Pawar opted out of the Lok Sabha elections, fresh pressures mounted on him to reconsider his decision on Tuesday.

This time it was another grand-nephew Rohit Pawar, who publicly appealed to Pawar to enter the electoral fray.

Rohit Pawar, son of businessman Rajendra Pawar, penned a short post on his social media accounts, appealing to his grand-uncle to fight the ensuing Lok Sabha elections, saying that "it is the desire of lakhs of party workers also".

On Monday, Sharad Pawar voluntarily decided to step out of the parliamentary poll race and instead it is widely expected that another grand-nephew, Parth Pawar, son of former Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar, will contest from the Madha constituency.

Ajit Pawar and Rajendra Pawar are the sons of Pawar's brothers - Anantrao and Appasaheb - respectively, of the powerful Pawar clan, influential in western Maharashtra politics.

Rohit Pawar - who is himself being groomed to contest the upcoming Maharashtra Assembly elections - fervently asked Sharad Pawar "to do a rethink on his decision".

To a question if Sharad Pawar had declined on grounds it would not be proper for too many people from a single family to contest the Lok Sabha polls, he countered: "Its not about a family. For Pawar Saheb, entire Maharashtra is like his family."

However, top NCP sources claim that this time, Pawar may not relent and would choose to keep himself free to campaign for the Congress-NCP in Maharashtra and for the Opposition parties elsewhere in the country to counter the Bharatiya Janata Party.

"Besides, it would have appeared somewhat awkward for a person of his stature to contest against his children and grandchildren. It's a wise decision and at least the ruling NDA cannot hurl accusations of promoting dynastic politics," said a senior leader, not willing to be identified.

Another factor that probably weighed Pawar's decisoin was the move by the Congress to field only two persons from the Gandhi family - Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi - with Priyanka expected to take a back seat for now.

--IANS qn/vd

( 358 Words)

2019-03-12-20:52:07 (IANS)