A confident chief minister Prithiviraj Chavan on Thursday said that with the alliance between Congress and the NCP finalised, it was becoming clearer that the saffron combine would be routed out of the BMC after 17 years.
"The signs of change are visible. We couldn't give people a joint platform last time, so we lost, despite having sizeable share of votes. This time, both parties thought that we should not divide the votes," said Chavan, talking to the media.
He also ruled out any rift between the allies over seat sharing, admitting that the Congress had given some of the seats, where their candidates had done well in the last civic polls, to the NCP, to seal the alliance.
Referring to Congress MP Gurudas Kamat's missive to the party leadership, expressing opposition to the alliance, Chavan said: "I interacted with all MPs and MLAs, along with the party's senior leadership, to arrive at the decision. If we can win the corporation on our own strength, that's great, but we tried in 2002 and 2007 and did not succeed, hence the need was felt to opt for an alliance."
The Congress and the NCP now plan to put out a joint election manifesto and a campaign that will focus more on development issues, rather than highlight negative aspects of opponents. "I'd rather focus on our progress by us than talk about corruption or scams of others."