Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) President Sharad Pawar, hitting out a BJP said on on Saturday that that politicians should not take voters for granted as even powerful leaders like Indira Gandhi and Atal Bihari Vajpayee had been defeated in elections. He also said that the ruling Maha Vikas Aghadi government in Maharashtra is a “successful experiment” and that he neither acted like a “headmaster” nor wielded a “remote control” of the three-party coalition regime.

Criticising former Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis over his ‘Mi punha yein’ (I will come back) refrain during the last year’s assembly polls, Pawar said voters thought this stance smacked of arrogance and felt that they should be taught a lesson.

Giving full marks to the ruling alliance, applauding Uddhav’s 8-months at the state’s helm, Pawar said,  “The styles of working of the late (Shiv Sena founder) Balasaheb Thackeray and Uddhav Thackeray are quite different… But the latter is doing a good job as the Chief Minister.”

He also said that that there was not an “iota of truth” in reports about differences in the three ruling allies- Shiv Sena, NCP and Congress- that are part of the Uddhav Thackeray-led Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government.

His observations came during an interview with the Shiv Sena’s mouthpiece, Saamana, conducted by its executive editor Sanjay Raut.

“Definitely… I can say that the MVA is a successful experiment,” Pawar said about the government that comprises of Shiv Sena, NCP and the Congress besides smaller groups.

Asked whether he was like a headmaster or wielded a remote control over the government, Pawar, who is the chief architect of the MVA, asserted: “No… none of these… I an not a headmaster, not a remote control… this is a democratic government and cannot be run by any remote control… the government is run by the CM and his council of ministers.”

Pawar spoke with Raut on a wide variety of issues including the Opposition Bharatiya Janata Party, the Covid-19 pandemic and the ongoing lockdown.

Sharad Pawar’s party, NCP  played a key role in bringing together the ideologically disparate Sena and the Congress and helped government formation in Maharashtra.

Sharad Pawar started his career with Congress and rise-up in his political career with time. He became the youngest Chief Minister of Maharashtra in 1978 and then hold the position twice in 1988 and 1993.