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NCP chief Sharad Pawar not to contest Lok Sabha Elections 2019, Fadnavis says this is major victory for BJP

Pawar Decided Not To Contest The Upcoming Lok Sabha Polls As Two Members Of His Family Are Already Part Of It And He Himself Had Contested Elections 14 Times In The Past.

News Nation Bureau | Edited By : Nabanita Chakorborty | Updated on: 11 Mar 2019, 11:19:16 PM
Sharad Pawar, NCP chief, not to contest Lok Sabha Elections 2019 (File Photo)

New Delhi:

Sharad Pawar, the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) chief and former Union minister, will not be contesting the Lok Sabha Elections 2019. Pawar decided not to contest the upcoming Lok Sabha polls as two members of his family are already part of it and he himself had contested elections 14 times in the past. Meanwhile, there are reports that NCP senior leader Vijay Singh Mohite Patil or his son Ranjit Mohite Patil will now contest the general elections from Madha Lok Sabha constituency, the traditional bastion of Pawar. The NCP chief's daughter Supriya Sule currently represents the family bastion of Baramati in the Lok Sabha.

Addressing a press conference in the national capital on Monday, the NCP cheif said, "I thought that already two members of my family are contesting polls this time and hence I felt this is right time to take decision to not contest since I already have contested 14 times in the past".

Pawar also told reporters that his nephew Parth Pawar is keen to contest the Lok Sabha polls from the Maval parliamentary constituency and that he is not afraid of contesting the elections. "I have won the polls even when the Opposition wave prevailed," he stated. Parth Pawar is the son of former deputy chief minister Ajit Pawar, an NCP MLA from Pune district.

In a related note, the NCP chief had earlier declared that he will contest the upcoming Lok Sabha elections, while his nephew Ajit Pawar and others family members will not be in the fray. Briefing the media, Pawar had said, "Ajit Pawar is not going to contest the election, Parth Pawar is not going to contest, Rohit Pawar is not going to contest. Sharad Pawar is going to contest".

Reacting to Pawar's announcement, Fadnavis said the NCP leader "sensed the change in the air", and decided to rethink on plans to contest Lok Sabha poll from the Madha parliamentary seat. Addressing BJP workers at the party office in Dadar, he said, "Prime Minister Narendra Modi once praised Pawar of being able to sense any change earlier than others."

"It looks like he has understood the change and this (Pawar's pulling out of LS poll arena) is a major victory for the BJP, Fadnavis added.

Pawar, the 78-year-old politician serves as the president of the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), which he founded in 1999, after separating from the Indian National Congress. He has been a three-time chief minister of Maharashtra besides being the Defence and Agriculture Minister at the Centre. The Rajya Sabha MP, who leads the NCP delegation, holds a position of prominence in national politics as well as the regional politics of Maharashtra.

Pawar's decision came a day after the Election Commission (EC) on Sunday announced the dates for Lok Sabha Elections 2019 along with state Assembly polls in Arunachal Pradesh, Odisha, Andhra Pradesh and Sikkim.

While General Elections 2019 will take place in 7 phases between April 11 and May 19, the Assembly polls in Andhra Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Odisha and Sikkim will also be held simultaneously in April-May 2019.

However, elections for the Jammu and Kashmir Assembly, which was dissolved following a clash between the PDP and the BJP, will not be held along with the Lok Sabha polls.

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First Published : 11 Mar 2019, 03:36:26 PM