Centre using ED to subdue opposition: Pawar

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Pune: The BJP-led Union government is using the Enforcement Directorate (ED) to “subdue” opposition parties across the country, NCP president Sharad Pawar alleged on Saturday.

Speaking to reporters here, Pawar said the misuse of the investigation agency was being seen not only in Maharashtra but in other states too.

“Of late the (Union) government seems to be using this agency to subdue the opposition. This is happening not only in Maharashtra, but also in Punjab, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and in some southern states too,” he said.

The Union government is also ignoring the farmers who have been protesting against the new farm laws for over a year, the former agriculture minister said.

“It has been 14 months since farmers have sat in protest, leaving behind their homes. The government should have taken cognizance of these protesters who have been sitting there for so long, but it is unfortunate that they are being ignored,” he said.

On the BJP’s demand that temples in Maharashtra be thrown open to the public, Pawar said the Centre itself has given instructions to the state government about taking extra precaution in view of the COVID-19 pandemic situation.

“The chief minister (Uddhav Thackeray) and state government are following the Centre’s directive,” said Pawar whose party is part of the ruling combine in the state.

He also cleared the air about Swabhimani Shetakari Sanghatana chief Raju Shetti’s name being recommended for appointment as a Member of Legislative Council from the governor’s quota.

“We have kept our word. We have proposed that Shetti’s name be included in the list….We are waiting for the governor’s decision,” Pawar said.

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