Pawar ‘cool’ after losing NCP name, symbol; vows to rebuild party

The party has approached the Supreme Court for relief in the matter and expressed hope that it will get justice

"Everybody knows who founded the NCP," says Pawar despite losing the symbol (photo: IANS)
"Everybody knows who founded the NCP," says Pawar despite losing the symbol (photo: IANS)
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IANS

Former Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) president Sharad Pawar on Saturday said the country has never witnessed a situation in which a person who founded a political party has been removed from it, but “this happened with the NCP”. The veteran leader also vowed to rebuild his party.

Meeting a large number of supporters and members of the public at his Govind Baug residence in Mumbai on Saturday morning, Pawar (83) said there have been many party disputes in India in the past.

However, he said not only the party’s name but even the NCP’s iconic ‘clock’ symbol was taken away, which was not in accordance with the law. He said, "Everybody knows who founded the NCP."

Now the party has approached the Supreme Court for relief in the matter and expressed hope that they will get justice there.

“Nevertheless, there is no need to worry too much about losing the symbol… Till date, I have contested 14 elections. Among them, five were on the symbol of a pair of bullocks, a cow and calf, a charkha (spinning wheel), the hand, and lastly, the clock. Taking away the symbol does not mean that the organisation is finished,” Pawar pointed out.

He stressed the need for party workers to increase their public outreach and explain to the masses the party's policies and principles, and what the party can do for them.

“I don’t think there will be many problems even while starting afresh… We shall go around Maharashtra with new hope and meet people, convince them, so there won’t be a great deal of difficulties with a new symbol,” said Pawar optimistically.

This was Pawar’s first official comment after Maharashtra Assembly speaker Rahul Narwekar ruled that the ‘real NCP’ belonged to deputy chief minister and Sharad Pawar's rebel nephew Ajit Pawar.

Earlier, the Election Commission of India had recognised the Ajit Pawar faction and given the NCP name and clock symbol to him. On Ajit Pawar’s recent speeches in the state appealing to the people to vote for him and his candidates, Sharad Pawar said, “It appears that he is trying to gain public sympathy but the masses of the state will take the appropriate decision during elections.”

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