Other States

Congress, NCP begin talks on seat sharing for Assembly polls

The Congress and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) on Tuesday held their first meeting to discuss a seat sharing arrangement for the upcoming Assembly polls in the State.

“We held a primary meeting today. The issue of seat sharing isn’t of concern to us as we are concentrating on winning the election and ensuring that our front’s Chief Minister comes to power. We are not to judge each other’s strength and demand seats based on that. On the contrary we will be working as a united front to win the election,” said newly- appointed Maharashtra Congress committee president Balasaheb Thorat.

“The only criteria is the candidate’s capability to win the election. We are concerned only about that,” he said.

In the 2009 Assembly polls, Congress contested 174 seats while NCP fought on 114. In 2014, both parties contested independently. A group within the NCP is demanding an equal seat share based on the changed political equations as Congress has only one MP from Maharashtra compared to four from the NCP.

In reply to a question on sharing of seats with allies, Mr. Thorat said no such discussion was held, and added, “This is a continuous process. The decision on how many seats will be shared with whom will be taken in next meetings.”

Both the parties however, are far from reaching a consensus on the division of 288 Assembly seats as they may have to incorporate several other players such as the Raju Shetti-led Swabhimani Shetkari Sanghtana (SSS), left parties, Bahujan Vikas Aghadi (BVA), factions of Republican Party and possibly, the Raj Thackeray-led Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS).

Mr. Thorat also said that no discussion on MNS took place in Tuesday’s meeting.

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Printable version | May 8, 2021 6:24:52 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/congress-ncp-begin-talks-on-seat-sharing-for-assembly-polls/article28494872.ece

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