Hoping Congress Gets Stronger As Opposition Is Good For Democracy, Says Nitin Gadkari

Pune: Union Minister for Road and Transport and Senior leader Nitin Gadkari had said that a strong Congress is important for democracy and that it’s his honest wish that the party becomes strong on the national level.

In an interview given on the sidelines of a Lokmat journalism award celebration in Pune on Saturday, Gadkari claimed that as the Congress has weakened, regional parties have taken its place, which is bad for Indian democracy.

He said he expedited the Pune Metro DPR which was pending for several years due to the ‘unending underground and overhead debate. “I sat with Devendra Fadnavis for an hour and asserted that we shall go ahead with the consultant’s plan. We resolved not to debate that issue again and now you see that the work has reached fruition. Sometimes, you have to bulldoze the decisions,” he said.

“Democracy runs on two wheels — the ruling dispensation and the Opposition. A strong Opposition is a need for democracy. Hence it is my honest wish that the Congress party should become stronger. Also, with the Congress weakened, its place is being taken by regional parties which is not good for democracy,” said Gadkari.

“Those who follow Congress ideology should remain in the party and have faith in its ideals. In 1978-80, I had joined the BJP and had come to Pune to participate in the party convention. When I got off at the railway station, carrying the publicity material on my shoulders, I bumped into Shrikant Jichkar who suggested to me that I should enter a ‘good party’ which will give me a future. I told him that I will jump into a well and end my life but won’t abandon my ideology. At that time, BJP had only two MPs in Lok Sabha. But times changed with the efforts of party workers, and we got a Prime Minister in Atal Bihari Vajpayee. So one should not abandon one’s ideology in moments of despair,” he said.

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