The BJP on Wednesday raised the possibility of UPA allies deserting a "sinking ship" and cited agriculture minister Sharad Pawar's reported remark about the UPA's "low credibility due to scams."
Claiming a "good impact" for senior BJP leader LK Advani's anti-corruption yatra, the opposition party said Pawar was a senior leader in the government after Prime Minister and his comments could not be dismissed lightly by the Congress.
"A minister who is no less capable than Sonia Gandhi or the Prime Minister has spoken from a neutral platform. Pawar has acknowledged that the government is besieged with scandals, that there is a loss of trust of the people and the credibility of the government has been lost," BJP spokesperson Rajiv Pratap Rudy said.
Pawar was quoted as telling a Marathi daily in Mumbai that a series of scandals had weakened the authority of the UPA-II government and this had led to other forces such as the judiciary asserting themselves.
Rudy said, "Either the Congress is feeling the heat of its allies or the allies are feeling that they are sailing on a sinking boat. Earlier, the West Bengal chief minister did not accompany the Prime Minister to Bangladesh due to differences over Teesta river water-sharing. This was not just the action of Mamata but also an indicator of many things to come."
Rudy said Pawar had praised two NDA governments- Narendra Modi-led Gujarat and Nitish Kumar-led Bihar- for good governance. "Pawar has praised Modi as a chief minister who is a reformist, one who takes up new ideas and welcomes innovations."
Asked if Pawar's comments indicate that he wanted to join the BJP-led NDA, Rudy said, "It looks like he is planning to leave the UPA…The question also arises why the Prime Minister did not stop the scams with his intervention or is it that he is not in charge."