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Swallow the BITTER pill, Pawar tells UPA

Last updated on: June 9, 2012 18:06 IST

'One has to swallow a bitter pill to get cured'

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In an exclusive interview with IBNLokmat, Union Agriculture Minister and Nationalist Congress Party president Sharad Pawar has blamed the United Progressive Alliance for the spiralling prices of food items. 
 
The UPA government does not make tough decisions fearing public backlash, said the NCP supremo.
 
Pawar also expressed his displeasure with the decision making process in the UPA government.
 
"Vajpayee's cabinet had linked petrol prices with changes in international crude prices. We made a mistake by changing this decision. I had opposed the change. The government should make tough decisions in larger national interest, even if it upsets the people. One has to swallow a bitter pill to get cured. We did not make some decisions at the right time and the price rise is an ill effect of that," he said, adding, "those decisions should be made. An atmosphere for investment should be created."

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'If you think I have done something wrong, file an FIR'

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The Union minister termed Team Anna's allegations against Prime Minster Manmohan Singh "unfortunate." He also ridiculed Team Anna's demand to set up a committee to probe the allegations.
 
"If you think I have done something wrong, file an FIR against me. Drag me to court. Do you believe in our judiciary," he asked Team Anna.
 
He also broke his silence on his meeting with yoga guru Baba Ramdev.

"He had sought my appointment. As a minister, I should meet the chiefs of social organisations. But I did not agree with his opinion that FDI is black money. I agreed with Baba Ramdev that we need a rational approach for changing the tax regime. If black money is brought back, it can be used to solve problems of poor farmers and Dalits," said Pawar.

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Image: Activist Anna Hazare


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'Maharashtra is losing the trust of industrialists'

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Pawar also commented on the recent developments in the Bharatiya Janata Party. He believes that Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi cannot be a prime ministerial candidate because "one cannot be a leader when large section of the society is doubtful about him."
 
Pawar also continued his veiled attack on Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan.

"He has spent his entire life in Delhi. He visited various places as a party in-charge. Visiting the field with responsibility is a different thing," he said.

While praising former Maharashtra CM Vilasrao Deshmukh's industry policies, he lamented that "in the last few years, Maharashtra is losing the trust of industrialists."

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Image: Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan


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