New Delhi, July 29: Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) supremo Sharad Pawar has advised Rahul Gandhi to take over reins of the Congress party and travel across the country. Speaking to a news channel on Wednesday, Sharad Pawar said only a Gandhi can unite all Congress leaders, adding that Rahul Gandhi should avoid targeting Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The newly-elected Rajya Sabha MP also accused the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) of trying to destabilise the Maharashtra government. Sharad Pawar Says No Rift in Maha Vikas Aghadi, Terms Maharashtra CM Uddhav Thackeray's Performance 'Satisfactory'.

Asked about the Congress party, Pawar said: "I have seen Congress for several years now. And I want to note one thing. Whether anybody accepts or not, Gandhis are a cementing force for Congress. Soniaji succeeded in bringing the Congress together. Now, Congressmen have accepted Rahul Gandhi. It is their internal matter. And it is up to the rank and file of the party. But I think they should hand over the entire responsibility of the party to him." Maharashtra Congress Minister Nitin Raut Hits Back at Sharad Pawar For Chiding Rahul Gandhi on India-China Face-Off.

The NCP chief said Rahul Gandhi should not take over reins of the Congress party, but also reach out to leaders and workers. "He should start touring the country. He should travel, meet party workers. This is something he had done some time ago. He should start doing it again. It is important to mobilise party workers," Pawar said. Asked about the former Congress president's consistent attack on PM Modi, Pawar said he should avoid that.

"We have seen that when you target any one person individually, your credibility goes down. It should be avoided," Pawar said. The NCP chief also said that the BJP trying to destabilise the Maharashtra government. Pawar's NCP is a partner in the Shiv Sena-led Maha Vikas Aghadi government in Maharashtra. Congress is also an ally of the state government.

Referring to Operation Lotus, Pawar said, "Similar efforts are going on here as well. Devendra Fadnavis says we don’t want to disturb or destabilise this government in Maharashtra. But it is all humbug. All efforts are on from all levels – from the government of India to opposition parties – efforts are on to destabilise this State. But they did not succeed."

(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Jul 29, 2020 05:03 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website