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  Metros   Mumbai  09 Jun 2019  Congress, NCP may tie up for polls

Congress, NCP may tie up for polls

THE ASIAN AGE.
Published : Jun 9, 2019, 6:57 am IST
Updated : Jun 9, 2019, 6:57 am IST

In the 2014 Assembly elections, The BJP had won 122 seats, followed by Shiv Sena (63). The Congress and the NCP had won 41 seats, respectively.

State party unit chief Ashok Chavan
 State party unit chief Ashok Chavan

Mumbai: Despite Congress workers expressing their reluctance towards an alliance with the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), both the parties are likely to contest the Vidhan Sabha polls together.

According to sources, the Congress was in favour of joining hands with the Prakash Ambedkar-led Vanchit Bahujan Aghadi (VBA) for the Assembly polls. But the lack of response from the VBA has forced it to go with the NCP.

In the Lok Sabha polls, Congress-NCP had formed an alliance. However, Congress workers had alleged that NCP did not support them enough in the polls and instead helped the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).

The Congress workers also insisted on forming an alliance with the VBA. The party had accused the Ambedkar-led party of being the B-team of the BJP during the Lok Sabha polls. The VBA got around 40 lakh votes in the Lok Sabha polls, mainly in Dalit and Muslim pockets of the state, cutting into the Congress share.

The Congress won just one Lok Sabha seat in Maharashtra while its ally, the NCP won four. The BJP-Shiv Sena alliance swept the polls with 41 seats.

However, there are reports that the VBA is not so keen on forming an alliance with the Congress and is likely to go alone in the Vidhan Sabha polls.

Despite party workers’ insistence on ending the ties with the NCP, Congress leaders are denying any move to call off the alliance with the NCP. State party unit chief Ashok Chavan said, “Some leaders have expressed their anger and we will work on it. All is well with the alliance and we will fight elections together.”

Earlier, Mr Chavan and other leaders discussed the political situation in Vidarbha and the Congress’ performance in the Lok Sabha elections at a meeting. Party sources said that the poor showing in the polls (the Congress won only one seat in Maharashtra) was attributed to the lack of connect with the youth, factionalism and the failure to realize that the Prakash Ambedkar-led Vanchit Bahujan Agadhi would eat into Congress' votes.

In the 2014 Assembly elections, The BJP had won 122 seats, followed by Shiv Sena (63). The Congress and the NCP had won 41 seats, respectively.

Chavan supporters only pleading to BJP for entry: Girish Mahajan

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Saturday hit back at state Congress chief Ashok Chavan after he alleged that chief minister Devendra Fadnavis was trying to poach his party’s MLAs. Senior BJP minister Girish Mahajan said those with Mr Chavan are only pleading the BJP to grant an entry into the party.

“At least 25 MLAs of the Congress and the NCP are in touch with the BJP. If I reveal their names, Mr Chavan will not find many people around him. Those who are constantly moving with him are pleading us to take them into the party. The political situation is very much in favour of the BJP,” said Mr Mahajan.

He further said that the Opposition was likely to receive a major jolt ahead of the state Assembly elections that is due in September-October this year. “Some of the Congress and NCP MLAs have either met me personally, called me over the phone or have sent feelers through third party stating that they were interested in joining the BJP,” he said.

Mr Mahajan added that it wasn’t an issue of poaching but an entry is allowed to anyone who wishes to join the BJP. However, he highlighted the fact that the BJP would not promise minister’s post to everyone and the party won’t be able to give tickets to all MLAs.

Mr Mahajan, a confidante of Mr Fadnavis, said the Congress and the NCP together would not win more than 50 seats in the Assembly polls. “Like we did in the Lok Sabha polls, we will wipe them out. The Congress-NCP will not win more than 50 seats in Vidhan Sabha,” he said.

Senior Congress leader Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil might be inducted into the saffron party before the monsoon session of the state legislature beginning on June 17, he said.

Tags: girish mahajan, ashok chavan