Solapur/Pune, Feb 13 (PTI) In a veiled attack on the BJP, NCP chief Sharad Pawar on Saturday cited 'complaints' to claim that people close to the ruling party were associated with the January 26 violence during a tractor rally in New Delhi, which he said was aimed at 'discrediting' the stir.
Speaking at an event here, Pawar slammed the Narendra Modi government for not considering the demands of the agitating farmers who have been demanding scrapping of the three contentious agri-marketing laws.
'Farmers from Haryana, Punjab and UP have been protesting peacefully (at Delhi borders). No farmer took law into hands. One incident (of January 26) happened to discredit the ongoing agitation. Farmers were not involved. As per complaints, those associated with the violence were close to the ruling party,' he alleged.
The former Union agriculture minister said farmers have been demanding an assured minimum support price (MSP) for their produce and a legal provision for the same from the government.
'The Centre should consider this demand of farmers, but it is not happening. During the Manmohan Singh government, farmers never took to streets because the government used all its might to protect their interests,' he said.
Speaking in Jejuri twon in Pune district after inaugurating the statue of Ahilyabai Holkar, Pawar said, 'some people' were not happy when he, as a chief minister of Maharashtra, had taken the decision to allocate 50 per cent seats to women in local bodies.
'When I was holding the responsibility of Maharashtra, I had taken the decision to allocate 50 per cent seats in local bodies to women. But some people were not happy. Then I asked them if they can tell me one person who raised our country's pride after Jawaharlal Nehru and Lal Bahadur Shastri. They told me it was (former PM) Indira Gandhi,' he said.
'If women get an opportunity, they can show their potential. Ahilya Devi Holkar had shown us the same,' he said.
On Friday, BJP MLC Gopichand Padalkar's attempt to unveil the statue of Ahilyabai Holkar was foiled by the police.
He was booked along with 60of his supporters, an official said on Saturday. PTI MR CORR NSK NSK