Rajat Sharma


akbIn the midst of both rival camps of NCP holding parallel meetings in Mumbai to showcase their numbers (with the Ajit Pawar camp cornering most of the MLAs), I want to share two inside information about the developments that led to the revolt. Two months ago, Ajit Pawar had told his uncle that most of the party legislators wanted to join the BJP-Shiv Sena government. Sharad Pawar said, he knew most of his MLAs want so, but he had some personal reservations about BJP and Narendra Modi. After several meetings, it was decided, Sharad Pawar will resign as party president, Supriya Sule will be made party chief and NCP will join both the governments in Maharashtra and Centre. Ajit Pawar will become deputy chief minister, and Supriya Sule will become a Union Minister. Ajit Pawar will manage state politics. The deal was finalized. Accordingly, Sharad Pawar resigned from party president post. Two days later, Pawar made a U-turn, and took back his resignation. Ajit Pawar was shocked. He spoke to Praful Patel. Both decided that they would not tolerate this vacillating policy of their supreme leader anymore. Both of them spoke to five or six other senior leaders and top MLAs. It was finally decided that NCP would join the government, whether Shard Pawar agreed or not. This was conveyed to Home Minister Amit Shah. On his part, Amit Shah checked whether Ajit Pawar really had the support of 40 MLAs or not. Once it was confirmed, the political game was played out on last Sunday morning. I have also learnt that earlier too, a similar political game was planned, when MLAs supporting Eknath Shinde were assembling in Guwahati in twos and fours. Ajit Pawar spoke to his MLAs. There were 51 MLAs who were ready to join the BJP camp. Ajit Pawar told his uncle that NCP should join BJP camp even before Eknath Shinde brings all his MLAs. This would give the Pawar family an edge. Sharad Pawar agreed and asked him to initiate talks. At that time too, Praful Patel spoke to Amit Shah. Devendra Fadnavis was ready to accommodate NCP. As the talks reached a conclusion, Sharad Pawar suddenly backed out. Time and again, Ajit Pawar told his uncle that he had changed his stand thrice, and this has caused harm to the party. The party has now gone several steps back. There was a feeling among NCP leaders that Pawar wanted to become the leader of a united opposition because of his personal aversion to Narendra Modi and that he wanted to harm Modi and his party at all costs. To emerge as a leader of the opposition would require control over his own party NCP. This was the reason why Sharad Pawar, despite the opinion of his own senior party leaders, MLAs and former ministers, was unwilling to cede control over the party. When matters come to a head, Ajit Pawar clearly told his uncle that he had completed his innings, that he failed in forming an NCP government on his own, and that too, at a time when new emerging leaders like Arvind Kejriwal had formed governments in two states. The nephew clearly told his uncle: you have lost the ability to play the game anymore, please allow us to play the game. Sharad Pawar was told that he was now 83 years old, he was suffering from poor health and he should take rest. But Sharad Pawar is unwilling to call it a day and take rest. After Ajit Pawar led the revolt, the patriarch has now decided to go to the people and visit every nook and corner of Maharashtra, because he prefers to be in touch with the public. However, Praful Patel and Ajit Patel know each move that Sharad Pawar is going to make, and will surely work out how to counter them. The coming months in Maharashtra are going to witness a furious political war, the likes of which have not been seen in the past.


Khalistan supporters carried out an arson attack and partially damaged the Indian consulate in San Francisco early Sunday and posted the video on social media, claiming that this was in retaliation over the recent murder of wanted Khalistani terrorist Hardeep Singh Nijjar in Canada. The US State Department condemned the attack, while Canada assured India that it will assure safety for Indian diplomats. Khalistani supporters had circulated posters in Canada, naming Indian diplomats as responsible for Nijjar’s killing. India has requested Candaa, US and Australia “not to give space to these elements”. Khalistan supporters have planned to take out a “Khalistan Freedom Rally” in front of the Indian High Commission in Ottawa on July 8. India has summoned the Canadian High Commissioner and requested his government to take timely action. The question is why Khalistani radicals hiding in Canada and other countries have suddenly become active? Khalistan activist Gurpatwant Singh Pannu had tried to fan radicalism in Punjab by sending Amritpal Singh, but he and his associates were nabbed and lodged in Dibrugarh jail of Assam. Several Khalistani activists have been killed in the last six months. Hardeep Singh Nijjar was shot on June 20 in Surrey, Canada. He was the head of Khalistan Tiger Force. Earlier, Avtar Singh Khanda of Khalistan Liberation France died in Birmingham, UK. He was the handler of Amritpal Singh and had provided him protection for 37 days when Amritpal was hiding from police. Khalistani activists suspect Khanda was poisoned, though he was a cancer patient. On May 6, Paramjit Singh Panjwar of Khalistan Commando Force was shot by two assailants on a bike in Lahore. In January this year, Khalistani activist Harmit Singh Happy was shot near a gurudwara in Lahore. Harmit Singh was involved in narcotics trade and was imparting training to terrorists. I spoke to several Sikh scholars and senior leaders of Sikh community living in Canada and UK. They told me that the anti-India attacks have nothing to do with Sikh community, which is a peace-loving one in Australia, US, UK and Canada. Sikhs love India and a handful of them are trying to defame the entire community. Such elements will not be allowed to succeed in their nefarious designs. Some of the Sikh leaders complained that the governments of those countries delayed in identifying the perpetrators. This could be due to compulsion of votes or sheer negligence. Indian government has now taken a firm stand and has conveyed to the governments of these countries in clear terms. One positive aspect of these developments is that Khalistani outfits have now started fighting among themselves and are carrying out attacks to assert their supremacy. These outfits have now become weak and their handlers sitting in Pakistan are worried. The ISI handlers in Pakistan had trained these separatists for the last several years. ISI agents are spreading this disinformation that Indian agencies have a hand behind the elimination of Khalistani terrorists. Such allegations does not hold water anymore. It is because of these intra-rivalry that Khalistani elements are living in fear and they are trying to hold rallies to boost the morale of their supporters.

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