NCP will never ally with BJP, will not compromise on secularism: Pawar

Panaji: Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) supremo Sharad Pawar has scotched rumours that his party was cosying up to BJP, saying it will never support the saffron party nor join hands with communal forces and compromise on secularism.

“There are rumours being spread that NCP is growing close to BJP. This is absolutely false news. NCP will never support BJP,” he said addressing a public meeting in Vasco last night where he was canvassing for his party candidate Jose Philipe D Souza.

“We will never compromise on secularism. NCP will never be with the communal forces. Those who are favouring and spreading communalism, we will never be with them,” said

Pawar was recently honoured with the Padma Vibhushan, country’s second highest civilian award.

With Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray calling off their two-decade-old alliance with the BJP, speculation was rife that it could look at NCP to fill the crucial gap ahead of civic polls in Mumbai and other places in Maharashtra.

During the public meeting last night, Pawar slammed Prime Minister Narendra Modi over the demonetisation holding him responsible for generating unemployment in the unorganized sector and spelling doom on various sectors including the power loom industry.

He accused PM of having taken the demonetisation decision to “misguide” and divert the attention of the people from his failure to bring back black money from abroad.

“The PM overnight terminated a lot of currency and within a day, the entire country was standing in queues outside banks,” he said.

The former Union Minister also lambasted Manohar Parrikar for closing down mining industry in the state after he took over the reins in 2012 as the CM.

“People who were dependent on the mining industry were forced to face a bleak future with one decision of Parrikar,” he said.

Pawar also accused then Congress-led central government for furthering the crisis in Goa’s mining industry by allegedly revoking the environmental clearances granted to mining firms.