Mumbai Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader Sharad Pawar on Saturday sought to draw the curtain back on the Brahmin versus non-Brahmin controversy in Maharashtra and assured that no leader of his party would comment against a caste or religion. The assurances were made in a meeting with various outfits representing the Brahmin community.
The decision to pacify the community takes on its full significance in the context of local elections. About 40 representatives from 10 outfits attended the meeting called by Pawar at Nisarg Mangal Karyalaya, Gultekdi in Pune.
“The first issue raised by the representatives was that there is unrest within the Brahmin community over the statements made by some CPN leaders. I told them that it had already been discussed in the party forum and that all leaders were requested not to make any statements against any caste or religion and only talk about political decisions,” Pawar told reporters afterward. the meeting.
He added: “People in charge of responsible parties should step in to clear up misunderstandings of a community if it is creating unrest. They also need to make sure it doesn’t happen again.
The NCP leader said the representatives demanded the formation of an independent finance company dedicated to the Brahmin community to obtain a loan for business start-up at low interest rates. “I have asked them to make a request to the Chief Minister in this regard and to arrange a meeting, where he will consider the requests which are reasonable in nature,” Pawar said.
Speaking in more detail about the statements against the community, Pawar said the NCP does not support these statements and will caution the leaders who made them.
After attending the meeting with Pawar, Dr. Govind Kulkarni of Akhil Bhartiya Brahman Mahasangh (ABBM), said, “We have requested a financial company which has been formed in five states such as Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Rajasthan and Punjab. He agreed to arrange a meeting with the Chief Minister in this regard.
The NCP clarified on Saturday that it had decided to support Shiv Sena’s candidate in the Rajya Sabha elections which are due to be held for six Maharashtra seats on June 10. Pawar said they decided to keep the promise made to Chief Minister and Shiv Sena Chairman Uddhav Thackeray.
“With regard to the NCP, we have decided to contest a seat that we can win on our own, which will also leave us with a few votes in excess. Two years ago (in the Rajya Sabha elections) we could have won just one seat, but I asked the Chief Minister that we need two seats. He said for the next elections, you will support us (Shiv Sena), which was accepted. Thus, we cannot support any name other than Shiv Sena. We will transfer our votes to anyone proposed by Shiv Sena, be it Chhatrapati Sambhajiraje or anyone else,” Pawar said.
He added that the Shiv Sena and the NCP had enough votes to elect one more candidate.
A row erupted after NCP lawmaker Amol Mitkari ridiculed Hindu rituals such as “Kanyadaan” at weddings during a speech to the NCP’s Pariwar Samwad Yatra at Islampur in Sangli on April 19.
Pawar also read a poem written by poet Jawahar Rathod which deals with the issue of caste against backward classes who are not allowed to enter temples on May 9.
On May 14, Marathi actor Ketaki Chitale was arrested by Thane police for posting a derogatory message on social media platforms against Pawar. Chitale shared a “poem” apparently written by lawyer Nitin Bhave that poked fun at the NCP leader’s physical illness and described him as an anti-Brahmin leader destined to go to hell. The message contained phrases such as “hell awaits” and “you hate Brahmins” referring to the leader of the NCP.
Hemant Desai, a political analyst, said Pawar tried to pacify the Brahmin community which was agitated by statements made in the recent past.
“In the past, Pawar had said that Swami Ramdas was not Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj’s guru, but Mitkari’s statement became a trigger for controversy. He sent a message stating that the NCP is an anti-Brahmin party. The struggle between Brahmin and non-Brahmin is also not new in Maharashtra. Pawar tried to pacify the community in light of the election of many societies, especially Pune where the Brahmin community has a large population and the BJP is in power,” Desai said.