STUNNING videos and images of Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) President Sharad Pawar addressing a rally here in pouring rain on Friday evening have gone viral on social media and accolades poured on him on Saturday. The rally had barely started late on Friday when heavy rain started battering the venue, taking the organisers and the attendees by surprise, and some even contemplated cancelling the crucial public meeting.
But, undeterred by the sudden torrential rain, Pawar stepped to the dais and launched a blistering attack on the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party-Shiv Sena Government in the Centre and State. Senior party leaders on the stage, who initially fumbled, quickly settled down and even seemed to warm up to enjoy Pawar’s BJP-bashing in the lashing rain. At times, the 78-year-old Pawar’s voice seemed to quiver as the shivering cold rainwater drenched his trademark white shirt and pants.
“This is Varun Raja (Rain God Varun)’s blessings for the NCP. It will lead to a ‘miracle’ in the State, and that wonder will start from October 21. I am confident,” said Pawar, making an emotional connect that was reciprocated with a thunderous applause overshadowing the raging thunderstorm. Satara, an erstwhile royal kingdom is a crucial seat for the NCP which has a Lok Sabha by-poll and the regular Assembly elections simultaneously. In both, the NCP might is challenged by its former bigwigs -- BJP has fielded sitting Member of Parliaments Udayanraje Bhosale for the Lok Sabha and Shivendraraje Bhosale for the Assembly -- both are cousins.