Sharad Pawar Criticizes PM Modi's Election Remarks Amid Maharashtra Drought Crisis

Sharad Pawar, NCP (SP) chief, voiced concerns over Prime Minister Modi's statements against the opposition during the election season. Pawar also supported the Maharashtra government's request to relax the model code of conduct for drought relief and urged immediate actions like restructuring crop loans and providing water tankers.

PTI | Mumbai | Updated: 24-05-2024 16:48 IST | Created: 24-05-2024 16:48 IST
Sharad Pawar Criticizes PM Modi's Election Remarks Amid Maharashtra Drought Crisis
Sharad Pawar
  • Country:
  • India

The statements of Prime Minister Narendra Modi against the opposition in this poll season are a cause for concern, claimed NCP (SP) chief Sharad Pawar on Friday.

Talking to reporters here, he also welcomed the BJP-led Mahayuti government's appeal to the Election Commission (EC) to relax the model code of conduct to expedite relief work in areas reeling under water scarcity in Maharashtra.

"The Prime Minister's post is an institution. Modi occupies an important position. But there is no need to take cognisance of what he is speaking in election rallies," Pawar said.

The 83-year-old politician was responding to a question about PM Modi's remarks in Himachal Pradesh on Friday where he claimed that India had weak governments when the Congress was in power. "During that time Pakistan used to dance on our heads. The weak congress governments went around pleading for help around the world. But now India will fight its own battle," Modi said at the rally. Pawar said PM Modi's election speeches are ''worrisome and a cause for concern''. The NCP (SP) chief said Union Home Minister Amit Shah's claim that "BJP is already 310 paar" has no basis. Of the seven-phased Lok Sabha elections, two more phases are remaining.

"Responsible people should speak with some basis. We don't accept such statements," he said.

Pawar urged the Maharashtra government to take immediate steps to restructure crop loans and waive electricity bills and education fees to lessen the hardships of people in Chhatrapati Sambhajinagar and Pune division where it has declared drought.

The senior opposition leader welcomed the state government's stand in seeking relaxation of the model code of conduct to expedite relief work in drought-hit areas.

"There is no politics here. We will cooperate with the government and it has taken the right stand in writing to the Election Commission since the polls are over in Maharashtra," he said.

Pawar also demanded that MNREGA norms be relaxed so that a maximum number of drought-affected people get work.

Citing public demand, the former Union agriculture minister said his party has sought that crop loans be restructured and made available immediately. He also demanded a stay on loan recoveries. Pawar said insurance companies are dragging their feet over compensation and urged the state government to give necessary directions to these companies.

The government should provide water tankers to orchards as well as cattle camps, he said.

The NCP (SP) said that the state government has declared severe drought in 40 talukas and medium drought in 16 talukas of 19 districts. The situation in Chhatrapati Sambhajinagar and Pune is severe.

As much as 73 per cent of the state is staring at drought, said Pawar.

Asked about the absence of Agriculture Minister Dhananjay Munde during a drought review meeting headed by Chief Minister Eknath Shinde in Chhatrapati Sambhajinagar on Thursday, Pawar called it "serious" and said the CM should take congnisance of the matter.

To a question on a proposal to include some verses of 'Manusmriti' (ancient legal text) in school curriculum, Pawar said the move reflects the mindset of present rulers.

"Education experts should think about it. Attempts are being made to rewrite the curriculum. What are they trying to instil in our children," he asked.

Pawar's lawyer Pranjal Agarwal, who was present at the press conference, said he has sought that the EC reconsider its affidavit in the Supreme Court concerning the public posting of Form 17C, which gives the number of votes polled in a polling station. He said the EC delayed the release of turnout data by 11 days in the first phase and five days in the second phase. "There is distrust as Form 17C has not been published online. The voting percentage is changing every day," he claimed. Agarwal also demanded repolling in the Parli taluka of Beed Lok Sabha constituency, claiming that there is video evidence of "booth capturing" there. The demand is yet to be accepted, he said, "The CCTV in Baramati strongroom was switched off for 45 minutes. We have asked for its footage. The EC has ordered (to share it) but local authorities are not implementing the order," he said.

The party has also sought CCTV footage from Pune District Central Co-Operative Bank at Velhe in Baramati on May 6, Agarwal said. "Forty to fifty persons came out of the director's cabin with cash in their hands. The branch was open till 3 am of May 7 (polling day in Baramati)," he claimed.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

Give Feedback