The war of succession within NCP

The war of succession within NCP

In January 2012, NCP supremo Sharad Pawar announced that he would not contest the 2014 Lok Sabha election, in order to make way for younger leadership. And considering his age and health a proxy war for succession has started in the Pawar family. Reportedly, there has always been a silent power tussle between Ajit Pawar and Sharad Pawar’s daughter Supriya Sule and talks of Ajit rebelling against his uncle.
While there has never been an open rift between Sharad Pawar and his nephew, there has always been two clear camps within the party owing allegiance to the two leaders. Ajit Pawar has often made statements contradicting the NCP supremo. For instance, the former deputy CM praised the Modi government’s move to abrogate Article 370 from Jammu & Kashmir and called for making Pakistan-occupied Kashmir also a part of India. Ajit Pawar’s statement was despite the NCP president expressing his disappointment at abolishing Article 370 without taking the people of Jammu & Kashmir into confidence.
Notwithstanding, in a flimsy attempt at damage control, Sharad Pawar said that his nephew, the former Deputy Chief Minister is Maharashtra, had taken so much to heart the vendetta against his uncle that he had decided to quit politics and return to his farming and other businesses. However, Parth Pawar, Ajit’s son, disputed these claims and said that his father in not quitting politics.
Meanwhile, Sharad Pawar’s only daughter, Supriya Sule, has been growing in politics.
Supriya is currently a Member of Parliament in the 17th Lok Sabha. In 2009, she contested the elections for the Baramati Lok Sabha constituency and won. Recently Supriya Sule has been very vocal in attacking Maharashtra CM for his way of working. However, BJP claimed that there was a “succession battle” going on in the Sharad Pawar-led party and Sule’s recent attacks on the Maharashtra chief minister were only an “attempt to establish her worth” in the party.
Succession fight is taking new turn with the entry of two third generation Pawars in the in race. Rohit Pawar, the grand-nephew of NCP chief Sharad Pawar, is expected to contest Maharashtra Bidhan Sabha elections later this year. Ajit Pawar, former deputy chief minister, will contest from Baramati. Eventually, the entry of Rohit Pawar into politics has upset Ajit.
Moreover, Parth Pawar s/o of Ajit Pawar and scion of one of Maharashtra’s most influential political empires, too has been trying hard to project himself as a man of the masses, hopping temples, riding bullock carts and travelling in passenger trains. He is a natural successor for the top slot.