‘Right time to take decision’, NCP chief Sharad Pawar decides to not contest in Lok Sabha 2019 elections

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Updated: March 11, 2019 4:36:15 PM

Lok Sabha elections 2019: Sharad Pawar's announcement comes amid reports that NCP leaders were insisting Pawar to contest from Madha constituency in south-western Maharashtra.

After the 2004 Lok Sabha elections, Sharad Pawar joined the the Congress-UPA government headed by Manmohan Singh as Minister of Agriculture and remained in the office till 2014.

Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) chief Sharad Pawar announced on Monday that he would not be contesting the Lok Sabha 2019 elections. There were reports earlier that NCP leaders were insisting Pawar to contest from Madha constituency in south-western Maharashtra.

The Madha seat is held by his party leader Vijaysingh Mohite Patil. Pawar’s announcement at a press conference came after recent speculation that he may contest from there.

The NCP chief also indicated that Parth, son of his nephew and senior party leader Ajit Pawar, may be fielded from Maval LS constituency in Pune district.

“I thought that already two members of my family are contesting polls this time and hence I felt this is right time to take decision to not contest since I already have contested 14 times in the past,” Pawar was quoted as saying by news agency ANi.

Asked if the fear of possible defeat made him rethink of contesting from Madha, Pawar said, “I have successfully faced 14 elections. Do you think a 15th will deter me?”

Sharad Pawar is a Rajya Sabha MP while his daughter Supriya Sule is a Lok Sabha MP from the family bastion of Baramati.

Sharad Pawar had served as the Chief Minister of Maharashtra thrice between 1978 and 1995. After the 2004 Lok Sabha elections, Pawar joined the the Congress-UPA government headed by Manmohan Singh as Minister of Agriculture and remained in the office till 2014.

The Election Commission on Sunday announced the schedule for the 2019 General elections. The polling would take place in seven phases from April 11 to May 19. Counting for all seven phases would be done on May 23.

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