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Tuesday, Dec 10, 2019

‘Achha?’: Sharad Pawar’s cryptic reply on tie-up with Shiv Sena  

Pawar is in Delhi to attend winter session of the Parliament that started from Monday. His statement on Monday is in contrast to what he said remarks three days ago that an alliance of his party with the Sena and the Congress will soon form the a government and will last its full five-year term.

india Updated: Nov 18, 2019 17:24 IST
Faisal Malik
Faisal Malik
Hindustan Times, Mumbai
Nationalist Congress Party leader Sharad Pawar arrives in New Delhi on the opening day of the winter session of Parliament.
Nationalist Congress Party leader Sharad Pawar arrives in New Delhi on the opening day of the winter session of Parliament.(AP)
         

Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) chief Sharad Pawar’s cryptic reply on Monday over government formation in Maharashtra has left everyone confused. When he was asked about NCP forming a government with Shiv Sena, Pawar said he can’t answer that question.

“Ask BJP and Shiv Sena as they were together. They have contested the polls together we were not with them. In fact, Congress and NCP had contested the polls in an alliance,” Pawar said.

The NCP boss also replied to a query about the buzz in political circles of a Sena-NCP-Congress government in the state with one word: “Achha (Really)?”.

Pawar is in Delhi to attend winter session of the Parliament that started from Monday. His statement on Monday is in contrast to what he said remarks three days ago that an alliance of his party with the Sena and the Congress will soon form the a government and will last its full five-year term.

Pawar is said to be brain behind the idea of unusual alliance of Shiv Sena, NCP and Congress to keep BJP out of power.

He is expected to meet Congress president Sonia Gandhi over the political situation in Maharashtra.

Senior leaders from both Congress and NCP, who are part of the coordination committee, are scheduled to meet in Delhi on Tuesday.

According to a NCP leader, who didn’t want to be named, the party has decided to join hands with Sena to form a coalition government along with Congress in a core committee meeting held on Sunday in Pune.

All the three parties — Shiv Sena, NCP and Congress— have already prepared a draft of common minimum programme — based on which Congress will take its decision on whether to join the government or extend outside support.

NCP has been insisting that Congress should be part of the government to bring stability.

If the three parties come together their tally will reach 154 seats, nine more than what is needed to prove majority in the 288-member Maharashtra Assembly.

On November 12, Maharashtra came under President’s rule after no party could muster numbers to form a government. Results of the state assembly elections were announced on October 24.