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Ajit Pawar's penance cuts no ice with Opposition

Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar’s day-long fast yesterday to repent for his crass ‘urine’ remark has failed to impress the Opposition parties who are in no mood to relent from their stand of calling for his resignation.


Fast work: Ajit Pawar’s hunger strike at the Yashwantrao Chavan Samadhi in Karad, Satara. It started at 7.45 am and finished at around 5.45 pm in the presence of state home minister RR Patil. Pic/Raju Sanadi.

Ajit Pawar completed his ‘aatma-klesh’ (penance) fast at the Yashwantrao Chavan Samadhi memorial at Karad in Satara district. “We all have made mistakes, but we should be able to accept our mistakes and rectify it. Henceforth, I will make sure to use my words and language with more responsibility. The fast was an attempt at repentance, and not a stunt,” said Ajit Pawar while interacting with reporters at the spot.

But, Opposition parties criticised the one-day hunger strike, calling it a mere ‘political stunt’.

Shiv Sena spokesperson Dr Nilam Gorhe said, “Penance is not the solution. Our stand is clear that he should immediately resign. People are facing a water crisis due to the policies of Ajit Pawar. The current drought situation in the state is man-made. He took every decision without any discussion. From April 6 onwards, we have been raising our voices against the water crisis, but we haven’t received any response. His derogatory remarks only prove that he is not capable for his post. At Karad, our local Shiv Sena workers agitated today and demanded his resignation.”

Prakash Dhore, MNS city president, said, “He should think before he speaks. The comment was made on the people of the drought-affected region, which shows rude and arrogant behaviour. We have been protesting and demanding his resignation.”

Ajit Pawar’s comments, last week, have drawn strong and angry reactions from all quarters, forcing him to apologise. Shiv Sena, BJP and MNS members have stalled the proceedings of state legislature for the last three days, seeking his resignation. But, Ajit Pawar’s penitential fast, which started at 7.45 am and finished at around 5.45 pm in the presence of state Home Minister R R Patil, has found support from members from his party — NCP.

“He accepted his mistake with a big heart. He is sensitive, so he felt the pain. The matter should be closed since he has apologised,” said Nawab Malik, NCP spokesperson.

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