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HindustanTimes Wed,01 Oct 2014

Pawar likely to give up poll politics

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, January 31, 2013
First Published: 21:03 IST(31/1/2013) | Last Updated: 23:57 IST(31/1/2013)

Nationalist Congress Party chief Sharad Pawar on Thursday expressed his wish to retire from electoral politics after completing 46 in the arena and supported the idea of smaller states such as Telangana and Vidharba.

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Pawar also asked the government to call a meeting of UPA allies to discuss the issue of Telangana and other smaller states.

But, the veteran Maratha strongman wanted to continue as a party chief and ruled out possibility of merging his party with Congress, from which it broke off in 1990s.  

"Basically, I don't want to come to Parliament... There is no reason because this year I completed 46 years continuously" in Parliament and Maharashtra assembly, Pawar said while interacting with reporters.

His remarks came a day after NCP spokesperson DP Tripathi batted for him as the next prime minister saying claiming the whole country thinks Pawar is PM material.

"I will work for the party but I want to be away from parliamentary politics or government politics. I do not know what will happen tomorrow, this is my personal view," Pawar said.

Pawar dismissed speculation about his successor saying that there many good people in the party who can take responsibility.

"That (his successor) the party would decide. Praful (Union minister Praful Patel) can take responsibility. There are other good people in our party," he said.

Pawar said party will decide who will lead the party at the national level as also its Maharashtra unit.

Asked about NCP going back to Congress as foreign origin of Sonia Gandhi was no longer an issue, he said "NCP has good relationship with Congress but we want to preserve our separate identity".


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