New Delhi: Amid nationwide protests against the Citizenship Amendment Act, NCP chief Sharad Pawar said the country needs an alternative to the ruling BJP which “stays in the country“.

“There are some indications that anti-BJP sentiments are on the rise in some parts of the country. People need an alternative for such change, and such the alternative has to be staying in the country,” he said triggering speculation whether his target was Congress leader Rahul Gandhi who on Tuesday said he had met South Korea Prime Minister Lee Nak-yon during a visit to the country.

After Rahul Gandhi’s ‘Not a Savarkar’ jibe in Congress’ Bharat Bachao rally on last Sunday in New Delhi, the Congress leader is ‘missing in action’ when protests in Delhi university campuses took a violent turn. On Tuesday, Rahul Gandhi tweeted a photo of meeting South Korean president. Though it was not a private tour, as mentioned in Rahul’s tweet, his absence at a time when the party could have gained mileage by unifying all parties opposing the contentious Citizenship Amendment Act drew flak. “As a part of an official delegation, I today met with the PM of the Republic of Korea, His Excellency, Lee Nak-yon and other officials, in Seoul. We discussed a wide range of issues, including the current political & economic situation in our respective countries,” Rahul Gandhi tweeted.


Questions have been raised whether all is well in Maha Vikas Aghadi — the alliance of the unlikely partners of the Congress, the NCP and the Shiv Sena. MVA architect Sharad Pawar’s veiled jibe at Rahul Gandhi stoked the speculations. On the other hand, the NCP patriarch stood by Maharashtra CM Uddhav Thackeray’s Jallianwalabagh comment on the Jamia issue. Taking strong objection to police excesses on the university campus of Jamia Millia Islamia, the Maharashtra CM said that the incident reminded him of the Jallianwalabagh massacre.

“If he has said so, then it seems we are on the right track and our government will last long,” Sharad Pawar said.