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A divided opposition may benefit Fadnavis-led Maharashtra government in monsoon session

For the first time since 2014, both the parties took separate press conferences before the monsoon session, which starts on Monday.

mumbai Updated: Jul 24, 2017 00:58 IST
Naresh Kamat
Naresh Kamat
Hindustan Times
devendra fadnavis,maharashtra government,samajwadi party
This split in the main opposition parties is likely to give a clear advantage to Devendra Fadnavis-led government just when it was anticipated that the state would be put on the mat over issues such as the farm loan waiver.(HT)

On the eve of the state legislature’s monsoon session, the opposition parties have presented a disunited front with both the Congress and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) planning to adopt different strategies to corner the state government.

For the first time since 2014, both the parties took separate press conferences before the monsoon session, which starts on Monday. This split in the main opposition parties is likely to give a clear advantage to Devendra Fadnavis-led government just when it was anticipated that the state would be put on the mat over issues such as the farm loan waiver. If this split affects the floor co-ordination between the parties during the session, it will give the state government an opportunity to duck important issues.

The NCP was upset with the Congress’ move as they it as breaking the unity of the Opposition. “The Congress’ leader of Opposition wrote to the speaker of the House on various issues they will take up in the House without consulting us. This gives an impression that they don’t need us,” said NCP legislator Sunil Tatkare. He said despite being in touch with Congress leaders over the last three days, nobody has given them an encouraging response.

The NCP will counter the state government in association with the Peasants and Workers Party (PWP). On the other hand, the Congress said the NCP wanted to pursue its own agenda. “The NCP is an independent party and they wanted to talk about some issues on their own,” said Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil, opposition leader of the assembly. “However, we support each other in the assembly,” he added.

The Congress will lead the front with the Samajwadi Party, Lokbharti and the People’s Republican Party.

However, both the Congress and the NCP are planning to target the state government on similar issues. “The loan waiver is a sham. Farmers have not got anything till now,” said both the parties. They also demanded a high level investigation in the Slum Rehabilitation Authority (SRA) scam and also condemned the deteriorating law and order situation.

The state seems to be quite relieved on the situation. “A united opposition is always a headache and now since they have split, it is an advantage for us,” said a senior minister from the state assembly. The last budget session hardly functioned as it was paralysed by the opposition demanding loan waiver for farmers.

First Published: Jul 24, 2017 00:58 IST