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Will campaign against Pawar in Madha if alliance with Congress-NCP doesn’t work out: Raju Shetti

The final call on the alliance will be taken in the state unit meeting on February 28 in Pune

pune Updated: Feb 25, 2019 16:09 IST
Yogesh Joshi
Yogesh Joshi
Hindustan Times, Pune
Pune,Madha,alliance
Raju Shetti, chief Swabhimani Shetakari Saghtana.(HT/PHOTO)

Upset with the alliance offer from Congress and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), Swabhimani Shetakari Saghtana chief Raju Shetti hints at going solo in the upcoming Lok Sabha polls. Speaking to Yogesh Joshi,Shetti said, that Congress-NCP have not responded positively to his proposal of an alliance. The final call on alliance with opposition parties for the coming polls will be taken in a state unit meeting in Pune on February 28. Excerpts.

What is the status on the alliance with Congress-NCP?

There has been no response from the Congress and Nationalist Congress Party on our proposal for an alliance. We have asked for three seats, while they are willing to give only one seat which is Hatkanagle. In any case, we will not accept one seat.

You have asked for three seats. Which are they?

We are firm on fielding candidates from Hatkanagale, Buldhana and Wardha. The grand alliance has offered us only Hatkanangale seat. However, they are mum on the other two seats.

When can we expect a final decision on the alliance?

We have called for a state unit meeting on February 28 in Pune. The final call on the alliance will be taken in that meeting. We had a meeting in Kolhapur on Saturday which was attended by key leaders. The members insisted on taking a call on the alliance in the entire state unit meeting on February 28.

If the alliance does not come through, how many seats will you contest?

Our party has been preparing to contest in eight to nine seats. We will contest all of them if the alliance does not come through. We are basically a farmers’ movement and are always prepared to fight such battles.

You are planning to hold an ‘Elgar meeting’ (cry of assertion) on February 27 in Madha. Will you also be campaigning against Sharad Pawar if the alliance does not come through?

We are preparing for nine seats which also includes Madha. In 2014, our candidate lost by a mere margin of 25,000 votes. If the alliance does not come through, we will definitely field a candidate in Madha and campaign against Sharad Pawar.

First Published: Feb 25, 2019 16:09 IST