Rajyasabha MP and NCP chief Sharad Pawar has stirred a political controversy in Maharashtra. This time by criticising noted historian Babasaheb Purandare. Purandare is attributed with bringing the stories related to Shivaji Maharaj to the common man.
His stories many of which have become literary legends have been translated into plays too. And in 1974, Sharad Pawar, himself wrote a note praising the way Purandare brought to life the coronation ceremony of Shivaji Maharaj.
Words used by Pawar according to a letter being circulated on social media for Purandare and his work were, respectful-inspirational-nationalistic-clean and many other adjectives.
However, on Saturday during a book release function, as per reports Sharad Pawar criticised the historian. A report quoted Pawar saying, “I do not agree with the writings of Babasaheb Purandare on Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj. Purandare’s writings, books and speeches did injustice to the Maratha king.”
Many organisations and mostly the Brahmin organisations have taken a strong stand against Pawar for his remarks. Many say Pawar remembers all this only when he loses power.
“Have a look at history of Pawar, he has always appreciated Babasaheb Purandare. Till 1998 he has even felicitated Babasaheb Purandare. But now whenever he loses power, he starts criticising him. This is part of politics he follows,” said Vishwajeet Desphande, President, Parshuram Seva Mahsangh.
According to Deshpande, Pawar has done this in the past too, but people have seen through this politics and no longer fall for it.
“If Pawar has a problem with the history written by Purandare then he should write his own,” said Deshpande.
Even social media had many comments against Pawar’s recent remark. Many even substantiated the claim that Pawar had previously praised Purandare.
Political commentator and former editor Smita Deshmukh tweeted, “Kaka (Pawar) and every political leader in the state attended the three-hour majestic play on the life of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj called Jaanta Raja. He wrote in glowing terms about the Shiv Rajyabhishek portrayal at Shivaji Park. Only a divisive politician can do what he is doing.”
Deshmukh further stated that all this was being done by Pawar to target Devendra Fadnavis. Fadnavis is a Bramhin and the only chief minister in recent time to complete his tenure. With his kingdom gone, Kaka will be on the front foot with progressives to attack Brahmin. Target no 1 will be @Dev_Fadnavis Writers, journos and academicians will join gleefully,” she tweeted.
Another twitter user Adv Rohit Sarvadnya even tweeted a note that was apparently written by Pawar in 1974 praising Purandare.
When a NCP spokesperson was contacted for his comment, he said, “The Seniors will comment on this issue, I will like to refrain.”