Lok Sabha polls: Did Sharad Pawar dial BJP ally Nitish Kumar on counting day? NCP-SCP chief's first reaction | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
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Lok Sabha polls: Did Sharad Pawar dial BJP ally Nitish Kumar on counting day? NCP-SCP chief's first reaction

Jun 04, 2024 04:08 PM IST

Sharad Pawar's comments come even as the BJP-led NDA is likely to win a majority in Parliament, but well short of a landslide predicted by exit polls.

NCP-SCP chief Sharad Pawar denied media reports of him speaking to Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar or TDP chief Chandrababu Naidu amid the counting of votes for the Lok Sabha elections 2024 on Tuesday, June 4. Sharad Pawar also said the INDIA bloc will meet in New Delhi on Wednesday to decide the future course of action while also stating that the Opposition was not likely to form the government. 

Bihar CM Nitish Kumar met NCP president Sharad Pawar in Mumbai. (File Photo)
Bihar CM Nitish Kumar met NCP president Sharad Pawar in Mumbai. (File Photo)

“I have not spoken with anyone yet,” Sharad Pawar said at a press conference after some reports claimed that he had dialled JD(U) leader Nitish Kumar and Chandrababu Naidu.

Sharad Pawar's comments come even as the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) is likely to win a majority in Parliament, early vote counting showed, but well short of a landslide predicted by most exit polls. The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) won a majority of its own when it swept to power in 2014, ending an era of unstable coalition governments, and repeated the feat in 2019. 

“I spoke to Mallikarjun Kharge and Sitaram Yechury. The INDIA alliance meeting is likely to be held in Delhi tomorrow. The final decision is expected to be taken by this evening. Accordingly, I will be in Delhi,” Sharad Pawar said. 

To a question who would be the next prime minister, the veteran politician from Maharashtra said, "We have not given it a thought. I am not sure if the INDIA alliance can form the government. We will meet tomorrow and take a decision unanimously on the future course of action," Sharad Pawar said. 

The results in Uttar Pradesh had given a new direction to the INDIA alliance, he said, noting that even where the BJP was winning, its victory margins were narrow, compared to the last time. He also expressed satisfaction with his own party's performance, saying it contested ten seats and was ahead in seven.

Meanwhile, NCP (SP) workers began early celebrations in Maharashtra's Baramati Lok Sabha constituency on Tuesday as the party's sitting MP, Supriya Sule, was leading over her sister-in-law Sunetra Pawar of the NCP by more than 14,000 votes.

Workers of the Sharad Pawar-led NCP (SP) danced on roads, sprinkled 'gulal' on each other and raised slogans in support of their party and Sule.

As per the latest data on the Election Commission's website, Supriya Sule 1,43,686 votes, while Sunetra Pawar, the wife of Maharashtra deputy chief minister Ajit Pawar, got 1,29,190 votes.

"When they started with '400 paar', people started suspecting that they were going to change the Constitution. The entire country was angry at their attempts to change the Constitution. I am happy that Sharad Pawar, at the age of 84, proved that he is the centre point of Maharashtra's politics," NCP (Sharad Pawar faction) leader Jitendra Awhad told reporters.

In the Pune Lok Sabha seat, where BJP candidate Murlidhar Mohol was leading over Congress candidate Ravindra Dhangekar, workers of the saffron party also celebrated by throwing 'gulal' and dancing to DJ music.

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