Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut on Tuesday compared the dramatic resignation of NCP chief Sharad Pawar to a similar move by Sena founder Bal Thackeray, underlining that Pawar was the soul of Maharashtra politics.
Raut recalled that Balasaheb Thackeray too had quit as the Shiv Sena Pramukh at one time because he was fed up “dirty politics and allegations”.
“History seems to have repeated itself… But owing to the love of Shivsainiks, he (Thackeray) had to withdraw his decision… Like Balasaheb, Pawar Saheb too is the soul of the state’s politics,” the MP tweeted from Mumbai.
Raut’s Shiv Sena is a member of the Maha Vikas Aghadi alliance which also includes the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) and the Congress.
In a surprise move, the veteran Pawar on Tuesday announced that he was stepping down as the NCP chief. He founded the party 1999 after he revolted against Congress leader Sonia Gandhi’s foreign origin.
Pawar made the announcement at the launch of a revised version of his autobiography, triggering protests by party workers and leaders who pressed the leader to take back the decision
NCP leader Anil Deshmukh, present at the meeting in Mumbai where Pawar made known his decision, said both Maharashtra and India needed Pawar.
“We have urged him to review his decision,” Deshmukh told a Marathi news channel.
In New Delhi, a senior Congress leader Tariq Anwar and an NCP co-founder, said Pawar does not take any decision without thinking it through.
“What the internal matter is we do not know but, as far as I know Sharad Pawar, he does not take any decision without thinking it through,” Anwar said.
If Pawar has resigned from the post, he would have a plan for the future, he added. “It depends on him what is to be done.”
(With agency inputs)