Mumbai, Dec. Dec 12 : Turning 80 here on Saturday, Nationalist Congress Party President Sharad Pawar said that it is necessary to relentlessly work hard and pursue the ideology or philosophy one believes in, even as a host of bigwigs such as Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Congress leader Rahul Gandhi wished the veteran politician on his special day.
The octogenarian leader called for inculcating the teachings and philosophy of Mahatma Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru, Chhatrapati Shahu Maharaj, Mahatma Jyotiba Phule and Babasaheb Ambedkar in the new generation.
“I am happy to see the younger generation coming forward in the party. It gives me new energy. One should never compromise on ideology. It is not just enough to remember these great leaders, but it is also important to follow their path,” Pawar said while replying to a flood of tributes marking his birthday.
He said the need of the hour is to remain ever-alert and aware while doing public work, and ensure that the family is not ignored.
“When you take care of the needs of the last person in the society, you learn a lot on having clarity and direction of the road ahead of you,” said Pawar.
The NCP chief said he was “truly overwhelmed” and acknowledged the warm sentiments of the party leaders, workers and others on his birthday.
The NCP and its frontal organisations organised a grand felicitation function on the occasion in which top party leaders spoke and recalled Pawar’s service during his 55-plus years in public life.
They included Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar, NCP General Secretary Praful Patel, state NCP President and Water Resources Minister Jayant Patil, NCP Mumbai President and Minority Affairs Minister Nawab Malik, Food and Civil Supplies Minister Chhagan Bhujbal, Rural Development Minister Hasan Mushrif, Social Justice Minister Dhananjay Munde, Housing Minister Jitendra Awhad and senior leader Eknath Khadse.
The big day started for Pawar with birthday greetings from Prime MInister Narendra Modi, Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, Congress MP Rahul Gandhi, Shiv Sena chief spokesperson and MP Sanjay Raut, BJP Leader of Opposition (Council) Pravin Darekar, Congress minister Amit V. Deshmukh, Bollywood actor Riteish Deshmukh, and many other political leaders and celebs from different fields.