In a bid to iron out growing differences on power sharing and keep the saffron brigade at bay, the Democratic Front partners – Congress and the NCP – have hammered out a formula to retain control in the municipal corporations in the state.
At a joint meeting held in Nagpur on Wednesday, PCC Chief Prabha, the state NCP President, Arun Gujarathi and its General Secretary, Gurunath Kulkarni, agreed that the party which got more seats in the just concluded municipal elections would get the president’s post while the number two would get the post of vice-president. The parties feel that this would minimise the chances of opposition gaining advantage.
According to sources, the meeting was held in view of past experiences that the both the NCP and the Congress had made an "un-holy" alliance with the BJP and Sena in ZP, Panchayat and municipalities to share power in few areas. Such move is also on this time in several municipalities, particularly in Vidarbha and that’s why leaders of both the partners have formulated a formula to prevent such practices.
Presently, the Congress can get control of 28 municipalities while the NCP can have power in 25 on their own strengths out of 169 municipalities in which elections were held in November. If the new formula is implemented smoothly, both the parties can share power in 41 more municipalities. In the just concluded 169 municipal elections, the Congress got 902 while NCP bagged 839 seats.
Talking to Hindustan Times, Gurunath Kulkarni informed that his party has already directed its all district presidents to implement this formula accordingly. The elections of president, vice-president and other office-bearers of these municipalities will be held on December 16. "This is a board policy. However, exception in some cases cannot be ruled out," admitted Kulkarni.
The formula would also minimise the simmering rift between the principal partners of the DF government and will send positive signal for the ensuing elections of 28 other municipalities and coming ZP and municipal corporation polls in the state, Kulkarni felt. The elections of 28 more municipalities will be held on January 7 while the elections of ZP and Municipal Corporations are expected in February 2007.