Saturday, April 20, 2024

ED being used as tool to terrorise, silence political opponents, says Sharad Pawar

Sharad Pawar

Solapur, January 20: Nationalist Congress Party chief Sharad Pawar on Saturday said the Enforcement Directorate was being used as a tool to terrorise and silence political opponents.
He was responding to a query on grandnephew and party MLA Rohit Pawar getting summons from the ED to appear before the agency on January 24 for questioning as part of its money laundering probe into the alleged Maharashtra State Cooperative Bank (MSCB) scam.
The MSCB case stems from an August 2019 FIR of the Mumbai Police’s Economic Offences Wing. The ED had raided Baramati Agro, a company owned by the Karjat-Jamkhed MLA, and some linked entities in Pune, Aurangabad etc on January 5.
Hitting out at the Centre, Sharad Pawar said, “The ED is being used to silence political opponents through misuse of power and to terrorise them. We have to go to the people to defeat such tendencies.”
Asked about seat-sharing for the Lok Sabha polls, which are to be held in the first half of this year, the former Union minister said talks are underway with the Vanchit Bahujan Aghadi of Prakash Ambedkar, the Peasants and Workers Party (PWP) and the Communists to get them in the Maha Vikas Aghadi fold.
The MVA at present comprises the Shiv Sena (UBT) led by Uddhav Thackeray, the Congress and the NCP faction under Sharad Pawar.
“A final decision will be taken soon. A committee of all three MVA partners is working on the seat sharing formula,” he told reporters.
Asked about Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar’s oft-repeated statement that old people were not giving a chance to the young in politics, Pawar, who is the target of the jibe, said he did not give importance to such talks.
“Who gave him a chance in politics? Who gave him a ticket to contest,” the senior Pawar retorted.
The NCP split in July last year after Ajit Pawar and eight MLAs joined the Eknath Shinde government. Since then, the Deputy CM has raked up Sharad Pawar’s age to justify his rebellion. (PTI)