Sharad Pawar steps down as NCP president

Announces decision a day after completing 63 years in public service, says party should be led new generation


Geetanjali Minhas | May 2, 2023 | Mumbai

#Maharashtra   #NCP   #Sharad Pawar   #Politics  
(Photo: Courtesy @PawarSpeaks)
(Photo: Courtesy @PawarSpeaks)

Nationalist Congress Party supremo and senior Maratha leader Sharad Pawar on Tuesday said that he is stepping down as the president of the party. He announced his decision during the launch of second edition of his autobiography ‘Lok Maze Sangati’, leaving his party workers in a state of sudden shock and surprise.

“I have three years left of Rajya Sabha membership during which I will focus on issues related to Maharashtra and India with a caveat of not taking any responsibility. After a long period of public life from May 1, 1960 to May 1, 2023, it is necessary to take a step back,” said Pawar.

He said that now the party should be guided by the new generation on its intended direction. He said a committee of NCP members should be formed to decide on the election of the vacancy in the president's post. It should include Praful Patel, Sunil Tatkare, K.K. Sharma, P.C. Chacko, Ajit Pawar,  Jayant Patil,  Supriya Sule,  Chhagan Bhujbal, Dilip Walse Patil, Anil Deshmukh, Rajesh Tope, Jitendra Awhad, Hasan Mushrif, Dhananjay Munde,  Jaydev Gaikwad and ex-officio members: Fauzia Khan, president, Nationalist Mahila Congress,  Dheeraj Sharma, president, Nationalist Youth Congress, Sonia Duhan, president, Nationalist Youth Congress and Nationalist Students' Congress.

“My colleagues, even though I am stepping down from the post of president, I am not retiring from public life. I will continue to strive for the growth of the party organisation to take the ideology and goals of the party to the people and to serve the people as they deem fit.

“Constant travel has become an integral part of my life. I will continue attending public events, meetings. Whether I am in Pune, Mumbai, Baramati, Delhi or any other part of India I will be available to all of you as usual. I will continue to work round the clock to solve the people's problems,” he said.

The political heavyweight expressed his desire to do more in the fields of education, agriculture, cooperation, sports and culture amongst others. He said he will also pay attention issues related to the youth, students, workers, dalits, tribals and other weaker sections of society.

Pawar’s announcement led to mayhem at the venue with NCP leaders and workers getting up from their seats and raising slogans demanding that he withdraw his decision. “We will not leave the hall until you withdraws your decision. We do not accept Saheb’s [Pawar’s] decision. We urge you to withdraw it. We will not move until you do it,” they said.
His nephew, Ajit Pawar, walked to the podium and asked workers to return to their seats, but to no avail.

“We should see his decision in the light of his age and health also. Everyone has to take a decision according to time, Pawar Saheb has taken a decision and he won't take it back. Saheb has taken note of your [workers’] emotions. He has said that a committee will decide the future course of action. He will abide by a decision of the NCP committee on his resignation,” Ajit Pawar told them.



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