NCP supremo Sharad Pawar on Thursday said that the grand old party (Congress) has become “weaker” from the days of the UPA government and it has “no other option” but to stitch alliance with regional forces to halt the BJP’s electoral juggernaut.
The veteran leader has made the observation in his book, ‘Apani Sharto Par: Zameeni Hakikat Se Satta Ke Galiyaro Tak’ -- the Hindi translation of his autobiography ‘On My Terms: From The Grassroots To The Corridors Of Power’—released here in the presence of several opposition leaders including Congress’ Ghulam Nabi Azad two days ago.
“Looking at the current political scenario, it seems a challenging task for the Congress to emerge as an alternative to the BJP at national-level.
“The Congress has no other option left, but to join hands with small and regional parties to combat the BJP’s surge,” Pawar observed.
He though said that for such an alliance to work, the Congress will have to instil confidence in coalition partners that it will run the show the way former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee led the previous NDA government.
“Manmohan Singh did exhibit such a skill during the decade-long UPA regime. But we should not forget that the Congress of today is weaker than the Congress of the UPA days,” the Maratha strongman said cryptically.
The book, however, does not touch upon the situation post the recent assembly polls in five states including Uttar Pradesh, which the NDA major swept.
Pawar’s comments are in sync with views expressed by some opposition leaders, including those from the JD(U) and the Left parties, lately, calling for “opposition unity” to take on the BJP.
Pawar noted the BJP and the Congress are the only two parties with pan-India presence, but rued their politics is hit by personality cult and revolves around Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi, respectively