NCP Chairman Sharad Pawar, who has been criticized by the Brahmin community for some comments made by him as well as other party leaders, will hold an interaction with some Brahmin organizations at Nisarg Mangal Karyalaya in Pune on Saturday evening. Party leaders said Pawar would try to calm the “hurtful sentiments” of the community during the meeting.
The Brahmin community, which makes up about 2-3% of the population of Maharashtra, has raised objections to some of the recent comments made by Pawar and his party leaders. Comments allegedly harmful to society include such as: “Swami Samarth was not the chief tutor of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj” and that “Due to information given by Babashib Purandari, Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj was defamed”.
Remarks that encouraged the use of Phule pagdi instead of Peshwe pagdi and the comment that Hindutva organizations had a hand in Bhima-Koregaon violence infuriated many, along with the remark: “Earlier, Chhatrapati used to appoint Peshwe…now Peshwes nominate Chhatrapati.” The final straw was earlier this month after Pawar recited a poem by Jawaher Rathod in which he spoke of “divine power” and the superiority of one community over God.
Besides Sharad Pawar, NCP leaders, such as Amol Mitkari and Chagan Bhojpal, irritated the Brahmin community. At a public gathering of the NCP in Kolhapur, where top party leaders were present, Mitkari took pictures at the ‘puja’ led by a Brahmin priest during the marriage ceremony, while Bhojpal made ‘insulting’ remarks against the ‘puritans’ saying they had earned money from the priesthood.
The NCP leaders said the initiative of the meeting was taken by the Brahmin organisation. NCP spokesperson Ankush Kakade said, “The organization wanted to meet our party chief and raise certain points…Then the party chief suggested that instead of meeting one organization, he would meet with several of those who belong to Buna.”
Buy now | Our best subscription plan now has a special price
The NCP leaders said that since the Brahmin community appeared to object to certain comments, the party believed it was appropriate to address their grievances. “Pawar throughout his life supported all societies. He himself never made any derogatory comment against anyone. In fact, he had many Brahmin friends since his childhood and college days. However, it must be noted that Pawar has expressed his opinions regarding Some actions and comments of individuals but never against society.All his comments are based on facts and evidence.This is why the party decided to hold the meeting, said one NCP leader.
Citing the case of Pawar’s statement that Swami Samarth was not the mentor of Chhatrapati Shivaji, an NCP leader said: “This again depends on the judgment of the Aurangabad High Court of Bombay which clearly stated that there is no substance to prove that the two ever met He went on. At the same time, Pawar did not say a single word against Swami Samarth. And he never will. The chief said.
Brahmins of the province
Major Brahman organizations like Brahaman Mahasangh and Parshuram Seva Sangh decided to boycott the Saturday meeting. “When the NCP leaders say objectionable things against the Brahmin community, the NCP chief does not take any action against them or ask them to apologize. If he does not want to listen to us, then why should we meet with him,” asked Anand Dev who heads the Brahman Mahasang.
“We will boycott meetings or interactions until the leaders of Pawar and the NCP have fixed their ways. It cannot continue like this. The NCP is trying to create and widen the rift between the different communities. The Brahmin community is hurt particularly badly by the way it is targeted without rhyme or reason, “He said.
“Despite usurping 20,000 acres of community land in Maharashtra, Pawar has done nothing to help the community. We have lodged 16 police complaints against Amol Mitkari for his insulting remarks against the community,” said Vishwajit Desvand, of Parshuram Siva Sangh. The National confirmed that the police will not take any action against him.
Deshpande said Pawar should ask Mitkari to apologize. We do not want the NCP leader to apologize. He can direct his party leaders to make an apology to the Brahmin community so that in the future we can have any interaction.
NCP in the meeting
Although some Brahmin organizations will stay away from the Pawar meeting, the NCP is confident that others will attend. Sadly, some organizations decided to boycott the meeting. But we still hope that approximately 10 organizations will attend the meeting. “It will be a closed case, and the press will not be allowed in,” Kakade said.