Firing a salvo at his estranged ally Prithviraj Chavan, the National Congress Party (NCP) president Sharad Pawar has criticised the former Congress chief minister for not having a "coalition mindset" and accused him of indulging in "diversionary tactics".
Stepping up his attack on the Congress, Pawar said, "The previous Congress chief ministers who led the alliance namely Vilasrao Deshmukh, Sushil Kumar Shinde and Ashok Chavan displayed the coalition mindset to run the government. But Prithviraj Chavan seemed to have a different mindset that queered the pitch."
Pawar, speaking to a Marathi news channel, said Chavan tried to project a different image of himself and indulged in "diversionary tactics" by creating an atmosphere of suspicion about NCP in order to malign its image.
"All that we had asked for was to speed up administration. He (Chavan) expedited work in the last month of the term, disposing of files of Urban Development department. Had he done it earlier, these questions would not have arisen," he added.
Asked as to whom NCP viewed as "main enemy" in the electoral battle for Maharashtra, Pawar said, "I do not treat any party as enemy though one can have differences on policy."
The NCP chief described the speculation of a possible post-poll alliance between his party and BJP as "rumour mongering" for political gains.
He, however, congratulated Prime Minister Narendra Modi for his "marketing" mission in the ongoing tour of the US and initiating a dialogue with the large NRI population there.
"It is a very intelligent and practical decision on his part which deserves congratulations," Pawar said.