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‘Sharad Pawar is the Tallest Leader in Maharashtra’: Nitin Gadkari

‘Sharad Pawar is the Tallest Leader in Maharashtra’: Nitin Gadkari
From the economic slowdown to the recent political drama in Maharashtra, Union Minister Nitin Gadkari spoke exclusively to The Quint’s Editorial Director Sanjay Pugalia on a range of issues.

While talking about the Congress-NCP-Shiv Sena alliance in Maharashtra, Gadkari said that NCP chief Sharad Pawar is the ‘tallest political leader in Maharashtra’ and that politics is a game of contradictions, compulsions and limitations.

Nitin Gadkari, Minister for Road Transport & Highways of India“We are not each other’s enemies. We are just opposing each other’s opinions. (Atal Bihari) Vajpayee told us that differences of opinion are important but we shouldn’t hold grudges. I feel that there can be a clash of opinions but without enmity. Sharad Pawar is from Maharashtra and I am younger than him. He is the tallest leader of the state. His party and ideologies are different from my party and ideologies. But whenever it comes to the good of Maharashtra, we meet and talk.”

Commenting on the economic slowdown, the Union minister said that factors like global economy, change in demand and supply and business cycle are responsible for the current situation.

Nitin Gadkari, Union Minister for Road Transport & Highways of India“There are three important factors in any economy. Sometimes global economy, demand and supply or business cycle can cause ups and downs in all types of businesses. Overall, I think this is a phase... and we (India) are the fastest growing economy. We aim to be the third largest economy in the world by 2030 and we will definitely be successful in achieving that. This difficult time shall pass.”

On being asked about businessman and philanthropist Rahul Bajaj’s recent comments about an ‘atmosphere of fear’ prevalent in the country, Gadkari said that he was not aware of his comments.

Gadkari, who belongs to Maharashtra, also talked about the difficulties he faced when he moved to Delhi. He recalled that once his friend asked him why he disliked Delhi and he answered back saying, “Wherever I go, I can’t find anything except paneer and aloo paratha. Mumbai is the best.”

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