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Updated: September 16, 2009 13:22 IST

NCP, Cong. seat-sharing deal ‘in a couple of days’

PTI
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Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Chhagan Bhujbal and Union Minister for Civil Aviation Praful Patel during a pre-poll alliance meeting with Congress leaders in Mumbai on Tuesday night.
PTI Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Chhagan Bhujbal and Union Minister for Civil Aviation Praful Patel during a pre-poll alliance meeting with Congress leaders in Mumbai on Tuesday night.

In the clearest signal that the Congress and the NCP will fight the coming Maharashtra Assembly polls together, NCP leader Praful Patel on Wednesday said both parties will amicably decide seat sharing in a couple of days.

Mr. Patel also said his party was “ready to give up some seats” to the Congress. In the last Assembly elections, the Congress had contested 166 and NCP 122 of the total 288 seats.

“We will contest together. The first round of meeting ended yesterday and the second round will be held today. We will resolve the issue of seat sharing amicably in a day or two,” he told reporters on the sidelines of a function.

Both the parties had the first round of formal talks on the issue on Tuesday night in Mumbai.

The Congress camp says the party is willing to give 109 to 115 seats to the NCP.

“Congress had contested a large number of seats last time. This time they will contest more seats. Some seats do not exist after delimitation. We are negotiating among ourselves on the new seats... we are ready to give certain seats to Congress,” Mr. Patel said.

The Congress is in the driver’s seat in Maharashtra in the wake of its good showing in the last Lok Sabha polls when it won 17 out of the 26 seats it had contested as against the NCP’s poor performance as the party secured just eight out of 22 seats it had fought.

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