Latching onto Maharashtra BJP chief Raosaheb Danve’s remark made against farmers in the past, NCP president Sharad Pawar on Friday asked how leaders of the ruling party were not ashamed of seeking votes from peasants.

Pawar made the remarks as he campaigned for Vishal Patil, a Swabhimani Shetkari Sanghatana (SSS) candidate for Sangli Lok Sabha seat, in Sangli.

“The BJP has become so arrogant that its state chief Danve calls farmers ‘saale’ (an expletive), while its (state) spokesperson Avdhut Wagh called children of farmers who committed suicide as orphans. And the same people are now seeking votes from farmers. How come they (BJP leaders) don’t feel ashamed while asking for votes?” Pawar asked.

Danve was at the centre of controversy in May 2017 after he allegedly said some farmers continued to complain despite the state government doling out sops to bail out tur growers.

“The state government has so far procured the highest amount of tur in the history and it is going to purchase additional one lakh tonne; still some (referring to farmers) continue to complain,” Danve had said at a meeting in Marathwada’s Jalna.

Pawar also said that the BJP was posing questions to the Congress and NCP, asking the opposition parties what they did for farmers during their tenure (between 2004 and 2014).

“You (the BJP) are in power for the last five years, but you expect us to answer questions about what we did for the agriculture sector. Mr Modi, we are in the opposition,” the former Union agriculture minister quipped.

Pawar targeted Modi over his remark that the NCP was faced with “family feud” and that he (Pawar) had lost grip over the party. Modi had made the remark during a poll rally in Wardha earlier this month.

“Why are you concerned about us? The NCP is not a party of any individual, but the one which is built with the blessings of people,” Pawar added.

Apart from Pawar, Maharashtra NCP chief Jayant Patil, Swabhimani Shetkari Sanghatana leader Raju Shetti and others also attended the rally.