NCP not keen on joining hands with Congress | mumbai | Hindustan Times
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NCP not keen on joining hands with Congress

Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) is not keen on joining hands with its ally Congress in the upcoming Mumbai civic election slated in February next year. This is the preliminary feedback that NCP leaders overseeing the city elections told their chief, Sharad Pawar in an informal discussion held on Wednesday.

mumbai Updated: Nov 04, 2011 01:53 IST
Ketaki Ghoge

Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) is not keen on joining hands with its ally Congress in the upcoming Mumbai civic election slated in February next year. This is the preliminary feedback that NCP leaders overseeing the city elections told their chief, Sharad Pawar in an informal discussion held on Wednesday.

The party’s wariness to have an alliance with the Congress will give a boost in the arm to the saffron combine that has ruled over the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) for three consecutive terms.

Sources in the party said the coalition will help the Congress in a big way but is unlikely to effect change in the fortunes of city NCP. NCP has the poorest presence in the country’s richest civic body with only 12 corporators. “We can improve our performance from having 12 corporators to maybe 20 under a seat-sharing formula with the Congress. Even if the coalition wins, it will not give us any real powers in the BMC in terms of calling the shots,” said a party functionary.

He added that the Congress would however get a big push because it would control the richest civic body, hold the maximum number of legislators, therefore undermining the NCP’s base further until the 2014 assembly polls.

However, Sachin Ahir, minister of state for environment and housing and NCP leader said the coalition would depend on the amount of seats and the kind of seats given to it by the Congress.

“If we are given our due by the Congress in terms of the number of seats and areas where we want them, we are willing to go for a coalition. However, no decision has been taken so far on the issue. A meeting on the issue will be held soon,” said Ahir.

He said if the Congress offered seats which were fewer than expected and not ‘winnable’, then his party would consider contesting all the 227 seats. Sources said the NCP will not be happy unless it is offered at least 70 seats.