Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut on Saturday said that though NCP President Sharad Pawar had termed the BJP as a 'divisive' party back in 1996, it is only in 2019 that the Sena realised it. Raut recounted that Pawar- a visionary and thinking politician who has given the state and country a direction- warned how the BJP adopted divisive methods which hampered the unity of the country. He was speaking at the launch of the Marathi book 'Nemkechi Bolane'. It is a collection of Pawar's 61 speeches at various political meetings over the years.
"Unfortunately, this realisation dawned on us only a couple of years ago," Raut said. He was referring to Sena's decision to dump the BJP after the 2019 assembly elections and join hands with the NCP and Congress to form the Maha Vikas Aghadi government headed by CM Uddhav Thackeray.
Though Pawar had called the BJP's policies 'regressive' and noted that they would push the country backwards, the Sena failed to gauge it then, the Shiv Sena spokesperson said.
During the book launch, Raut added that the book title, which translates to 'precise talk', is so apt that it must be gifted to Prime Minister Narendra Modi so he could learn how to speak concisely from it.
The Central Hall of Parliament was earlier famed for meeting between leaders of different parties. Even journalists met top politicians to talk on various issues concerning the country, Raut reminisced candidly.
"However, in the past few years, we have witnessed how those who attempt to ask questions are opposed and gagged. Such a tendency to deny the rights to raise questions can strengthen majoritarianism," Raut said. He also praised Pawar's 'far-sighted thinking', 'broadmindedness' and 'political acumen'.