Mumbai, Jun 8: Sharad Pawar, who is knee deep in the ugly Indian Premier League (IPL) controversy, now faces ire from the Shiv Sena chief, Bal Thackeray who has questioned why Congress is not forcing the agriculture minister to quit like how Shashi Tharoor was forced to stepped down as the Minister of State for External Affairs.
"Pawar's politics has always revolved around money and the power that comes from it. Nobody knows him better than I do. The money which bailed him out of many difficult situations has now put him in a tight spot and even if he applies oil on his body, he will not be able wriggle out of IPL scam," the latest editorial in the party mouthpiece, Saamna read.
"Pawar cannot escape (from the IPL bid row) as Congress has cornered him totally and the person behind it is Sonia Gandhi," the Sena Supremo added.
"The IPL scam has proved costly for him. I had told him many times to concentrate on agriculture (his portfolio) and not cricket. The same cricket has cornered him politically. His opponents in Congress are now capitalising on it," said Thackeray.
Bringing up the name of Shashi Tharoor, who was asked to quit on moral grounds for involvement in IPL, and Aviation Minister, Praful Patel, who was the other leader named in the row, Thackeray dubbed the Twenty20 cricket series as 'poisonous seed' in commercial cricket.
"Why the same yardstick should not be applied to other ministers (Patel and Pawar)? he questioned, adding, "The detractors of Pawar in Congress are satisfied with the gunning for his blue-eyed boy Lalit Modi. They want to eliminate him from national and state level politics in Maharashtra. Pawar is a shrewd political strategist but his unnecessary dabbling with cricket has proved to be his waterloo."