NCP meet today to decide its alliance with UPA
The Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) will meet on Monday to decide the future course of action on continuing its alliance with the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA).
On Saturday, the NCP had said it was unhappy with some aspects of functioning of the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government and it also had concerns over the way the alliance was working in Maharashtra.
NCP leader and heavy industries minister Praful Patel had said in Mumbai on Saturday that the functioning of the alliance government has not been according to expectation of the party and its views were not considered. He however added that his party would continue to be in the UPA.
Maharashtra NCP chief Madhukar Pichhad demanded regular coordination meetings while slamming chief minister Prithviraj Chavan for not giving him time to meet on five occasions while being available for Shiv Sena leaders.
Pawar, who is also the agriculture minister, has already sent a communication to the prime minister conveying the party's unhappiness. The NCP has threatened to pull out of government and provide it only outside support.
Sources said Pawar has told Manmohan Singh and Congress president Sonia Gandhi, whom he met in quick succession on Thursday night and Friday morning, that the NCP would like to keep out of the government and focus on its growth for the 2014 general elections.
Though the Congress leadership has sought to mollify Pawar, the NCP leader has remained unswayed.
The NCP leaders will meet in Delhi on Monday to take a final decision on its stand.
The UPA is in the middle of a vice presidential election and the government has to gear up for the forthcoming monsoon session of parliament.
With less than two years left for the next general elections, the government is yet to deliver on its key promise of food security bill. It is also yet to get the ticklish Lokpal bill passed in parliament.
BJP leader Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi took a dig at the Congress over its troubles and said the party could not follow the successful path of running alliance shown by National Democratic Alliance government.
Naqvi said the UPA government was ignoring national problems like drought and inflation, and was instead worried about troubles from allies and the presidential and vice presidential elections.
BJP president Nitin Gadkari said in Nagpur that the UPA was a sinking ship and allies were about to desert it.