Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has said that NCP leader Sharad Pawar has put his daughter Supriya Sule, MP, in the forefront to “transfer his legacy” and that he is the “driver of opposition unity”.
In an interview with ANI Editor Smita Prakash which was recorded on June 29 before the crisis in the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), Mr Fadnavis hit out at the dynastic politics and said Prime Minister Narendra Modi has lessened its impact in national politics.
Mr Fadnavis said Sharad Pawar has been instrumental in bringing together opposition parties.
“The person to bring the opposition parties together is Pawar Sahib. And the force behind bringing the opposition parties together, the parties who cannot see each other face to face is Pawar Sahib. The driver of opposition unity is also Pawar,” Mr Fadnavis said.
“He has health reasons but he is fit. Sharad Pawar visits places now. He is politically, totally alert. He is counted among those politicians who know politics from every side. He definitely wants to transfer the legacy of his party just like all family parties want. In order to transfer his legacy, he has put Supriyaji in the forefront,” the BJP leader said.
Mr Fadnavis said that Sharad Pawar would remain active politically as he continues to be NCP chief.
“If he wanted to take a backseat, he would have made Supriya Sule party president, but he has made her a working president. He has established his process of transferring his legacy but the person sitting in the driving seat is Sharad Pawar only.”
Sharad Pawar appointed Supriya Sule and Praful Patel as working presidents of the party in June.
NCP leader Ajit Pawar, who was the Leader of Opposition in Maharashtra, joined the BJP-Shiv Sena government in Maharashtra as Deputy Chief Minister on Sunday, causing a split in his party. The crisis in NCP has ramifications within Maharashtra and also for national politics.
Mr Fadnavis said dynastic politics is there and noted people should be promoted on the basis of their abilities.
“We are not opposed to a politician’s daughter and son becoming a politician. The point that we are trying to make is that a person should not go to a superior position just because he is the son of a particular politician. The person should not be promoted to a higher post if he or she is incapable, or if the person does not have an understanding or calibre. We are against this kind of dynastic politics, this is wrong,” he said.
“The result of dynastic politics is that the government ends up serving a family and not the people. But after Modi ji came to power, this kind of politics has lessened. After this, the only dynasty which will last is the one which will serve people,” he added.
Opposition parties are making efforts to forge a front against the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) at the Centre with an eye on next year’s Lok Sabha polls.
Leaders from 15 political parties attended the meeting of opposition parties convened by Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar last month.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)