NCP Chief’s INDIA Convenor Ambition Takes A Beating

Mumbai: NCP chief Sharad Pawar’s ambitions to become the architect of the opposition unity in form of the convenor of the INDIA alliance has taken a serious beating with the Adani issue brought to the centre stage of national politics by the Congress on Thursday.

Pawar had been trying to project himself as the uniting force for the diverse opposition across India. He also shares a very good personal rapport with several leaders from Tamil Nadu to Kashmir and Gujarat to Meghalaya. As most parties in the INDIA alliance had been political opponents of the Congress at some point in the past, Pawar stood a good chance to come forth as the most acceptable leader of the alliance.

However, his stakes for the post have taken a serious beating after Rahul Gandhi raised the issue of Adani at the press conference on Thursday.

Pawar shares close ties with the business tycoon and had even defended him when the demand for the Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC) probe was first raised after the Hindenburg report on the business conglomerate had come out earlier this year.

“An individual industrial group of the country was targeted, that is what it seems. If they have done anything wrong, there should be an inquiry. The JPC is not needed for that,” Pawar had said in an exclusive interview to Adani-owned NDTV back then.

He had also tried to ridicule the Hindenburg report while raising questions on its authenticity and said, “When they raise issues that cause a ruckus across the country, the cost is borne by the country’s economy; we cannot disregard these things. It seems this was targeted.”

The Congress’ reaction to Pawar’s pro-Adani stand was very mild back then, though the party stood firm on its stand on the necessity of the JPC probe.

Pawar’s praise for Adani in his autobiography

Pawar has even praised Gautam Adani in his autobiography ‘Lok Majhe Sangati’ for his industriousness and meteoric rise. Adani even had lengthy meetings with Pawar at the latter’s residence in Mumbai after the crisis. It is also said that he played a role in Pawar declaring unilateral support to the BJP government in Maharashtra way back in 2014.

In this backdrop, the leader, who has been challenged in his own state by his own family member, certainly doesn’t seem to stand a good chance of being backed by leaders from across the nation.

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