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Updated: July 26, 2012 02:28 IST

Congress-NCP rift ends

Smita Gupta
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NCP chief Sharad Pawar leaves after attending President Pranab Mukherjee's swearing-in ceremony in New Delhi on Wednesday. Photo: PTI
NCP chief Sharad Pawar leaves after attending President Pranab Mukherjee's swearing-in ceremony in New Delhi on Wednesday. Photo: PTI

The Nationalist Congress Party, which had threatened to pull out of the UPA government, buried the hatchet on Wednesday after the Congress accepted the idea of a coordination committee both at the Centre and in Maharashtra

The Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), which had threatened to pull out of the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government, buried the hatchet on Wednesday after the Congress accepted the idea of a coordination committee both at the Centre and in Maharashtra to ensure that its allies are consulted and involved in important decisions. While the one in Delhi will include all UPA allies, the one in Maharashtra will be a Congress-NCP panel.

The six-day-long rift ended after NCP leaders Sharad Pawar and Praful Patel met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Congress president Sonia Gandhi. Later, Mr. Patel read out a joint statement: “After deliberations, it was decided to set up an effective coordination mechanism very soon to ensure that the cohesive functioning of the UPA... and to ensure the UPA allies meet once a month to discuss policy and other issues.” To a query, he said: “Sharad Pawar and I are fully active in government and will continue to do so.”

A similar coordination committee will be created shortly in Maharashtra, where both parties have been governing the State for 13 years. While the committee in Delhi will be headed by Ms. Gandhi, the members of the one in Maharashtra will include Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan, Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar and representatives from the central leadership of the two parties.

Interestingly, the NCP, which adopted an aggressive posture on July 19, when it threw a bombshell shortly after voting for the presidential election ended, found it could not sustain its stand. On Wednesday morning, shortly after Mr. Patel stressed that his party did not issue an ultimatum to the Congress and that all issues could be resolved through dialogue, the Prime Minister told NDTV: “We are ready to speak to the NCP on any issue that concerns coalition politics, there is give and take.”

Through the last few days, the two NCP Ministers had skipped one Cabinet meeting and stopped attending office. Their complaint was that the NCP as well as other allies were not being included in the decision-making process, whether it related to policy issues, or appointment of governors.

The NCP may have pulled back from the brink on Wednesday, but its brief “revolt” has seen it become a rallying point for other UPA allies, including the DMK, the Trinamool Congress and the National Conference, with a fair amount of back and forth among these parties.

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It was only a matter of time before the NCP called a truce with its alliance partner the Congress for it has little bargaining power in the centre as well as the state. The Congress' big brotherly attitude however might put spokes in the wheel when it comes to running a coalition government in the state and the centre.

from:  C V ARAVIND
Posted on: Jul 26, 2012 at 09:05 IST

These are the days coalition government. No party gets full majority as there are mushroom like parties in the country. Each and every hut like party blacmails the major party in the government for their lustful demands. My suggestion is to pass a bill in the Parliament that there would be two or three major parties contest in the Parliament and no shanty like parties would have the right to contest in the elections.

from:  Rallabhandy Ravindranath
Posted on: Jul 26, 2012 at 06:47 IST

If the coordination committee where all coalition partners will be represented were to take all
decisions on policy and other matters, wouldn't the Union Cabinet be redundant? How
would the secrecy of decisions be maintained as in the case of cabinet decisions? If party
leaders who may not be ministers are members of the coordination committee, will it not be
tantamount to parties taking decisions and not the constitutionally recognized cabinet?

from:  K.Vijayakumar
Posted on: Jul 26, 2012 at 03:14 IST

Could you also find out how much was demanded and for how much the deal was finally settled.

from:  Nav Rattan Singh
Posted on: Jul 25, 2012 at 23:03 IST

Compromises reached with allies, who are themselves in political
decline,apparently for survival lowers the image of the Congress party
and harms its long-term interests. It should not concede to every
ally`s unashamed demand for a pound of flesh. Unprincipled and shrewd
politicians seldom realize that the electorate, or at least the
middle-class electorate, is increasingly getting disgusted & angry
with their uncontrollable greed and selfishness. The electorate is
watching every move and can see through pretensions. The verdict of
the people will be very severe. The Congress will only emerge
stronger by not conceding to such bargaining tactics. Always better to
take a long-term perspective even in these uncertain times. Sacrifice
made at the altar of ethical, normative politics shall be amply
rewarded as people crave for ethical politics.

from:  R.K.Misra
Posted on: Jul 25, 2012 at 22:06 IST

Committee for political ally, no committee for common man...bravo congress

from:  Sameer
Posted on: Jul 25, 2012 at 21:18 IST

sensible people were knowing this outcome it is a quarrel for sharing the loot in maharastra.once the sharing is settled than every thing is alright.look at praful patel who is a buisenness man in the guise of politician and pawar who is a mediator and buisennessman. these elected leaders are rising questions about their comfortability not at all about common peoples problems will you people still vote for these leaders,if it is yes then it is your fate.

from:  swamy
Posted on: Jul 25, 2012 at 21:06 IST

Congress again missed an opportunity to present itself to the nation that they are serious about giving the country a clean and corruption free government. They once again set a precedent to other official partners like TMC, DMK and RLD and their semipartners like SP, BSP and RJD ( common factor among all these except TMC is bundles of corruption charges) that a tail can wag the dog. Congress has more than 18 months to recover if they are able to get rid of all these corrupt partners who will any way ditch them in 2014 and come together as a corrupt-Front and challenge the Congress. Congress, if free of all this baggage would have strategically positioned itself as a party which will not tolerate dishonest and corrupt. Present Gandhi family (Sonia and Rahul included) has no such guts as Mrs Gandhi, the iron lady of India who was able to throw out the "coterie' of those days (Nijalingappa, Kamaraj,Jagjivanram and others) and not only could survive and but also rebound like a phoenix.

from:  MVJRao
Posted on: Jul 25, 2012 at 20:25 IST
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