iconimg Thursday, July 02, 2015

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times
Mumbai, February 27, 2013
Deputy chief minister and Nationalist Congress Party leader Ajit Pawar, on Tuesday, took on its ally Congress by terming the railway budget presented by union minister PK Bansal as unfair and disappointing for the city and the state.

"The budget has fallen short of the city's and state's expectations. MPs across parties need to put pressure to ensure that the expectations are met," said Pawar.

As many MPs have expressed their disappointment with the budget, the NCP would demand a revision in the document, he said. "The final decision will be taken by Union agriculture minister Sharad Pawar," said Pawar.

While his uncle Sharad Pawar refused to overtly criticise the budget, senior party minister Praful Patel welcomed it.

Sources in the party said that Pawar, who was at the receiving end in the irrigation scam that rocked the state last year, is unwilling to leave any opportunity to criticise the Congress.

With just one year to go for the 2014 polls, the deputy CM sees Congress as a rival and is unwilling to be accommodating. "The NCP chief doesn't want to rock the boat with the Centre, while Pawar does not want to compromise. Sharad Pawar is also letting his nephew keep the Congress in check in a way," said a senior party leader.

It is learnt that MPs from Mumbai and the state met Sharad Pawar to complain against the railway budget and requested him to take up the matter with Bansal. "On the whole, we feel that commuters' demands have not been met. The chief minister, in his representation to the railways, had asked for nearly 36 services, including 8 for the Mumbai Metropolitan Region. But, no such announcement has been made," said Nawab Malik, spokesperson of the party.

Congress party spokesperson, Sachin Sawant termed Pawar's comments to the budget as personal.