Mumbai: The Shiv Sena, the newest ally of the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), has downplayed the friction within the Pawar family over a central agency probe into actor Sushant Singh Rajput’s death.
NCP chief Sharad Pawar had Tuesday rebuked his grand-nephew Parth Pawar, describing him as “immature” for demanding a CBI probe into the actor’s death.
In an editorial in party mouthpiece Saamana Friday, the Shiv Sena has said Parth should take his grand-uncle’s words as an advice or a blessing for a young budding politician.
“Sharad Pawar’s one quote has stirred a storm. It is a storm if you call it one, or else it is nothing. It is not even a storm in a teacup, but there are elaborate discussions in the media,” the Shiv Sena said in the editorial. “News media competing 24 hours need some ‘mirchi masala’. So these people create such artificial arguments and storms to serve their purpose.”
The party said those handling the reins of political outfits often have to say bitter things. It added that Shiv Sena founder Bal Thackeray has often pulled up people, and even leaders such as Mahatma Gandhi, P.V. Narasimha Rao, Atal Bihari Vajpayee, Lal Krishna Advani and Prime Minister Narendra Modi have often “fed the bitter gourd” to their own, which is healthy.
“The mind will be less stressed if Sharad Pawar’s words are taken as a grandfather’s advice, which is a blessing,” the Sena said, adding Parth Pawar is new to politics and needs to work harder.
Thirty-year-old Parth Pawar, son of Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar, had on July 27 met Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh, an NCP leader, and demanded a CBI inquiry into Rajput’s death.
The state government has been resisting a CBI probe, with Deshmukh himself having said the Mumbai Police is competent enough to do the job and is investigating the matter in a professional manner.
Reacting to it, Sharad Pawar said the party gives “no importance to what Parth Pawar says and he is immature”, triggering speculation of a growing rift between him and nephew Ajit Pawar, who have been two power centres within the NCP and have often been at odds with each other.
Parth, who unsuccessfully contested the 2019 Lok Sabha election from Maval constituency, had also hailed the 5 August Ram Mandir bhoomi pujan as a “civilisational awakening for Bharat”, even as his granduncle had said it “would not kill the coronavirus”.
The Saamana editorial said Parth Pawar did nothing wrong in welcoming the Ram Mandir, “but if the party he is working with has a different ideology about it, differences in opinion come to the fore”.
Discussions of Sharad Pawar vs Ajit Pawar ‘meaningless’
The Saamana editorial also said too much is being read into Sharad Pawar’s remarks.
“News items such as ‘everything is not well in the Pawar family and there’s water boiling somewhere’ started doing the rounds over something that Sharad Pawar casually said,” the Shiv Sena said. “Some also shuffled cards to say that this is a direct message to Ajit Pawar. All this is meaningless.”
Many established leaders have committed the “stupidity” of demanding a CBI probe into Rajput’s death and there is a conspiracy to hurt Maharashtra’s pride and self respect from behind the curtains, the party said.
“There is reason to doubt if someone is using the young Parth for the same,” it added.
‘Ajit dada now has control over his tongue’
The editorial also referred to part verbal duels between Sharad Pawar and nephew Ajit Pawar.
“The entire Pawar family is skilled in politics and this skill reached Ajit Pawar, but if someone doesn’t have control over their tongue, they get a big slap,” Shiv Sena said in Saamana, referring to the many verbal spats that uncle Pawar and his nephew have had.
The most glaring example of this was in April 2013 when Ajit Pawar had ridiculed a farmer demanding better water management in his drought-hit area, asking if he should “urinate in dams” to bring water. An embarrassed Sharad Pawar had to publicly apologise on his nephew’s behalf.
Ajit Pawar has been “slapped” several times in his political journey and is now cautious, as a result, the Shiv Sena said. “Ajit dada now has control over his tongue,” the party added.
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