‘Let’s start seat-sharing talks’: Sharad Pawar repeats message to Uddhav, Patole

May 09, 2023 03:41 PM IST

NCP chief Sharad Pawar said he will talk to his colleagues in the NCP and leaders of the MVA alliance such as Uddhav Thackeray, Nana Patole,

PUNE: Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) chief Sharad Pawar on Tuesday reiterated his call to the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) partners to start seat-sharing talks for the 2024 elections to the Lok Sabha and Maharashtra assembly, saying it was important that there was clarity on the way ahead.

NCP chief Sharad Pawar on Monday also stressed that it was vital to start the negotiations with MVA partners (Anshuman Poyrekar/HT File Photo)
NCP chief Sharad Pawar on Monday also stressed that it was vital to start the negotiations with MVA partners (Anshuman Poyrekar/HT File Photo)

Pawar, who consolidated his hold over the NCP over the past week with his now-revoked announcement to step down, said he will raise this issue with Shiv Sena (UBT) chief Uddhav Thackeray and Maharashtra Congress party chief Nana Patole when he travels to Mumbai later this week.

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“The seat-sharing talks have not started yet but it should begin now. After reaching Mumbai, I am going to talk to my colleagues in the party, and leaders of alliance partners such as Uddhav Thackeray, Nana Patole, and other smaller parties. This is because in the direction we want to go, there has to be clarity which will increase trust among people. Our efforts should be in that direction,” Pawar told reporters in Satara on Tuesday.

This was the second time in two days that Sharad Pawar nudged the MVA partners to start talks for seats. On Monday, he told reporters in Solapur during his two-day tour of the region, that it was “vital that the MVA parties begin discussions (for seat-sharing), complete all these processes and start poll preparations accordingly”.

To be sure, the negotiations are expected to be complex and difficult for the alliance partners in view of the new realities of the Uddhav Thackeray-led party which lost a big chunk of its legislators to the Eknath Shinde-led Sena.

The NCP has 53 MLAs in the 288-member state assembly and sends four MPs to the Lok Sabha. The Sena (UBT) is reduced to 16 MLAs and five Lok Sabha MPs. The Congress on the other hand has 44 MLAs.

An NCP leader said it was obvious that the party would expect to get more tickets than its alliance partners in view of its numbers in the assembly.

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    Yogesh Joshi is Assistant Editor at Hindustan Times. He covers politics, security, development and human rights from Western Maharashtra.

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