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NCP, Shiv Sena, Congress iron out government formation strategy

Rahul Wadke Mumbai | Updated on November 17, 2019 Published on November 17, 2019

Nationalist Congress Party chief, Sharad Pawar, addresses the media during a press conference, in Nagpur, on Friday, November 15, 2019. - PTI   -  PTI

The Shiv Sena has declined to attend a meeting of the NDA on the eve of the Winter Session of Parliament on Sunday, confirming its exit from the alliance.

Back home, the Shiv Sena’s newfound ally, the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) is busy working out a Common Minimum Programme (CMP) for a Congress-NCP government with Shiv Sena in the lead role.

NCP President Sharad Pawar called for a core committee of all the party satraps at his Pune residence. At the time of going to press, the details of the meeting were not known.

NCP spokesperson Nawab Mallik told BusinessLine that the meeting will be held to work out a strategy on forming the government. All the main issues will be discussed and later, Pawar will go to New Delhi, he said. By Monday or Tuesday, he is expected to meet the senior leaders of the Congress party. However, he has not scheduled a meeting with Congress party Chief Sonia Gandhi. The formation of a new government in Maharashtra could take about a week, he said.

NCP sources said that all the three parties have reached a consensus over government formation and the process is in the final stages. The parties are taking time so that contentious issues don’t crop up later.

Shiv Sena spokesman Sanjay Raut told reporters that his party would lead the government in Maharashtra for the next 25 years and not just the next five years. The next government would be led by the Shiv Sena and based on a CMP, he said. Senior Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge has criticised Maharashtra Governor, Bhagat Singh Koshyari, for not even calling the Congress to form a government in the State. He said that BJP was given the benefit of time but the same was not given to Shiv Sena or NCP. He added that Congress and NCP would discuss the matter and make progress in forming the State government.

In the elections last month, the BJP emerged the single largest party with 105 seats in the 288 member assembly and its ally, Shiv Sena, bagged 56 seats. But both fell out over sharing power. The Shiv Sena is now working with the NCP, which won 54 seats and the Congress (44) to form the government.

With inputs from agencies

Published on November 17, 2019
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