Sharad Pawar Pulwama statement: In what could invite intense backlash, Nationalist Congress Party chief Sharad Pawar has said that people of Maharashtra are angry with the BJP-Shiv Sena government and that only a Pulwama-like terror attack can change the sentiments. Speaking to reporters during a press conference in Aurangabad after attending a meeting of party workers, Pawar said there was resentment against the Modi government before the 2019 Lok Sabha elections too, however, the Pulwama attack changed the situation.
A suicide attacker had rammed his explosives-laden vehicle into one of the buses carrying Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) men on February 14 on the Jammu-Srinagar National Highway in Pulwama killing 40 security personnel. The audacious attack led Indian forces launching airstrikes in Balakot, Pakistan.
"There was anger against the Narendra Modi government before 2019 Lok Sabha polls. But Pulwama attack changed the entire situation," Pawar said, adding that he was witnessing similar anger against the Devendra Fadnavis government in the state. "Only another Pulwama attack-like situation can change
people’s mind," he said.
Assembly elections in Maharashtra and Haryana, both ruled by the BJP, are due in October and November. The Election Commission is likely to announce the poll dates soon.
Talking about prospects of an alliance of Opposition parties to take on the BJP-Shiv Sena combine, Sharad Pawar said Samajwadi Party and other smaller parties are already in support of the Congress-NCP alliance. He said the NCP was ready to join hands with Raj Thackeray’s Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS), however, the Congress raised an objection to it.
The 78-year-old leader also criticised Prime Minister Narendra Modi for ‘misuse’ of central agencies like the CBI and ED. During Modi government’s tenure people learnt about (existence of) agencies like ED and CBI. I have worked with many prime ministers, but such misuse (of agencies) was
not seen earlier," news agency PTI quoted Sharad Pawar, as saying.