While the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) is celebrating Sharad Pawar’s 80th Birthday by holding around 400 virtual rallies and a slew of programs, including blood donation camps and job fairs, the Maharashtra government has launched a rural development scheme named Sharad Pawar Gram Samruddhi Yojana to commemorate the most senior political leader of the state.
The scheme will be implemented under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNRES).
The State government is also launching a digital platform on Saturday, allowing people with disabilities to register for their needs, such as hearing aid, battery-operated wheelchair, prosthesis, Braille kits etc. and those who believe in charity can also register and donate. The portal will be called www.mahasharad.in
Apart from this, a celebration program has been organised by the NCP at YB Chavan Centre in Mumbai with a limited number of people attending, keeping the need to maintain social distancing amid the Covid-19 pandemic in mind. Pawar will be present along with friends and family at this function
The party has asked leaders and workers to attend the program through virtual rallies.
Pawar is seen as the glue and the force holding the Maharashtra Vikas Aghadi government, comprising Shiv Sena, NCP and Congress, together. The three-party coalition government in the state to keep the BJP away from power was his brainchild. Both the NCP and the Congress were facing mass exodus last year and the coalition was seen as a survival strategy.
“Around 3 lakh people will be attending the celebrations through 400 to 500 virtual rallies across 36 districts of the state,” said state NCP chief and water resources minister Jayant Patil.
NCP has started blood donation camps across the state from December 10 that will continue for a week to help state cope up with the shortage of blood.
Pawar is a three-term chief minister of Maharashtra and has handled defence ministry, agriculture ministry at the Centre. Currently, he is a Rajya Sabha MP. He has been a big factor in Maharashtra politics and a key leader in national politics for five decades now.