Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) chief Sharad Pawar on Saturday stated that the union budget of 2018 had cheated farmers, and appealed them to unite and throw the BJP out of power. Mr Pawar was speaking at his party’s concluding rally of the Hallabol Yatra in Aurangabad. He levelled serious allegations against the BJP, accusing it of disrupting social harmony.
“Almost 16,000 farmers have committed suicide in the country in the past four years. This government has come up with a 50 per cent plus production cost formula. But their base for production cost is completely wrong. Like the last four years, they want to cheat farmers again,” said Mr Pawar. He also slammed the BJP-led state government over the loan waiver issue. “We had waived off loans of farmers. Within eight days of announcement of this decision, implementation was complete. But even after eight months have passed, this government has been unable to fulfill its assurance,” he said.
Raising the issue of social harmony in his speech, Mr Pawar, without naming the Kasganj violence, said, “UP was peaceful. But on January 26, when youths from the Muslim community were preparing for the flag-hoisting ceremony, a few people close to BJP went there and caused disturbance which led to riots. What kind of work is going on here? They want to create a communal rift in society for their political benefits” said the veteran leader.
NCP, in its attempt to reach out to the masses, had planned the Hallabol Yatra in the Marathwada . This was the second such yatra after it pulled out of similar protests in Vidarbha in December. The party has decided to reach out to northern Maharashtra too with a similar protest from the second week of February.
Former deputy CM of Maharashtra and NCP leader Ajit Pawar, too, slammed the state government over various issues. “This government is trying to suppress the voice of the youth. Notices are being sent to them!” he said.