Congress marathon meeting to discuss civic poll results
The Congress on Friday had a marathon meeting of its parliamentarians, legislators, and newly elected corporators to take stock of the party's performance in the civic polls and to decide its plan of action as the major opposition party in the municipal corporation.
All India Congress Committee member incharge of Maharashtra Mohan Prakash, chief minister Prithviraj Chavan, and state Congress chief Manikrao Thakre, who now also heads the city unit, met MPs, legislators and corporators at the Nariman Point office.
People were seen blaming others for the debacle. Seniors also got conflicting opinions on possible candidates for the mayoral elections. For the opposition leader, the front-runner was Suresh Koparkar, while Sheetal Mhatre's name was suggested by many for the deputy leader.
Sources said that while MPs had one-on-one meetings with their seniors, legislators owing allegiance to the respective MPs formed groups to have interaction. Newly elected corporators did not enjoy such privacy.
"I was primarily asked to shed some light on the poll results. Then I had to suggest a name for the opposition leader in the civic corporation," said an MP, requesting anonymity. "It was also discussed whether the party should contest mayoral elections and who should be the candidate."
Legislators from south Mumbai and central region said they left the decision of nominating the opposition leader and the mayor candidate to their seniors. "We will go with what our MPs and the high command decides," said a legislator.
When asked about the poor show in the elections, top functionaries said every MP and group of legislators had their own view. "It was a kind of 'don't blame me, others are responsible' response. But, this was expected," said a senior party official.
When contacted, Prakash said, "I reviewed the party's performance on Thursday and Friday as well. The interaction was satisfactory."