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HomemaharashtraShould speak keeping his constitutional stature in mind: Pawar hits back at...

Should speak keeping his constitutional stature in mind: Pawar hits back at PM after jibe on his tenure as agri minister

Mumbai: Days after Prime Minister Narendra Modi took a jibe at Sharad Pawar by questioning his tenure as Union agriculture minister, the NCP supremo hit back with facts and figures on the rise of crop production when the Dr Manmohan Singh-led UPA government was at the Centre.

In the temple town of Shirdi, Modi, without mentioning Pawar, had said: “…in the the 7 years (during BJP-led NDA rule) foodgrains worth Rs 13.5 lakh crore was procured under MSP while this figure was a mere 3.5 lakh crore during the tenure of a senior leader who was the Agriculture Minister in the earlier government. Personally I have respect for him.”

The same day, Pawar’s daughter and NCP National Working President Supriya Sule stated that the Modi government had given Padma Vibhushan, the country’s second highest civilian award, to Pawar for his work in the agriculture sector.

Referring to his tenure as agriculture minister from 2004-14, Pawar said the MSP for rice was Rs 550 in 2004, which rose to Rs 1,310 by 2014, registering a growth of 168 per cent – and similarly, MSP for crops like soybean saw a rise of 198 per cent.

“The Prime Minister’s post is an important post. The Prime Minister should give a statement keeping his constitutional stature in mind. I don’t know why he targeted me. But I think whatever he said is because of the fact that he was not briefed rightly,” Pawar added.

He said, during his tenure, thegovernment undertook several ambitious initiatives for the National Horticulture Mission.

(Published 28 October 2023, 10:31 IST)

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