Mumbai: Days after Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) chief Sharad Pawar announced his resignation from the top post of the party, the veteran leader withdrew his decision on Friday, saying that he cannot disrespect the emotions of the people.
This came hours after the 18-member committee appointed to decide the future of NCP unanimously rejected the resignation of Pawar. “The committee has passed a resolution unanimously. It says NCP president and Rajya Sabha MP Sharad Pawar’s resignation has been unanimously rejected. It recommends that Sharad Pawar should remain at the post as party president,” senior party leader and committee convener Praful Patel said.
Addressing a press conference, he said: “During the publication of my autobiography, I had announced my retirement from the NCP chief’s post. After 63 years in public life, I wanted to be free from all responsibilities. However, my decision did not go down well with the people and a strong reaction was seen. NCP workers, office bearers, and people were unhappy. They asked me to reconsider my decision. They appealed me for the same. Also, leaders from various political parties across the state and the country requested me to continue as the president of the party.”
Pawar added: “I cannot disrespect the emotions of people. Your love has made me emotional. The decision by senior NCP leaders’ committee was informed to me and I respect it. As such, I withdraw my decision of resigning from the post.”
However, the NCP chief said that although he will continue with his responsibilities, his primary focus now would be creating a new leadership and handing over new responsibilities to them.
Speaking about the role he plays ahead of the 2024 Lok Sabha polls, Pawar said: “Bringing all parties together is important when it comes to the elections. I enjoy personal relations with many who said that I was required for this. They include Rahul Gandhi, Sitaram Yechury and many more.”
Rubbishing rumours that have been floating around since he announced his resignation, Pawar said, “The rumours about some of our MLAs joining the BJP are completely false.”
When asked regarding the absence of his nephew and senior NCP leader Ajit Pawar, he said: “All party leaders were present at my house when the resolution was brought in this morning. I had once given a slight hint about my resignation to Ajit. However, it is true that I had never told this to anyone else sitting here.”
Following the address, the party also released a statement from Pawar that read: “Lok Maze Sangati means that the people of the country are my companions! And this is the real secret of my long and satisfying public life. I cannot disrespect their feelings. I am overwhelmed with the love, trust and faith showered on me. Considering the appeals made by all of you and honouring the decision of the committee constituted by the party, I am withdrawing my decision to retire.”