Amid Maharashtra deadlock, NCP chief to meet Sonia

Amid an impasse over government formation in Maharashtra, Nationalist Congress Party supremo Sharad Pawar will meet Congress president Sonia Gandhi in Delhi on Monday, senior NCP leader Ajit Pawar has said.

Ajit, who was deputy chief minister in the previous Congress-NCP government, also said on Saturday that the two parties have maintained right from the day of assembly poll results (October 24) that they will sit in opposition.

 

“Sharad Pawar will visit Delhi on Monday. I have information that he and Sonia Gandhi had spoken over the phone recently… he will speak to her (in Delhi)…. A lot depends on what they discuss,” Ajit Pawar told reporters.

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“But the Congress and NCP have maintained right from the day of results that they have been mandated to sit in opposition. We have prepared ourselves to sit in opposition,” he added.

No party or alliance has staked claim to form government in Maharashtra yet.

The Bharatiya Janata Party won 105 seats in the polls followed by ally Sena (56), NCP (54) and Congress (44) in the 288-member assembly.

The BJP and Shiv Sena, who contested the election together, however, have been bickering over the chief minister‘s post.

There was also speculation that the Shiv Sena may join hands with the NCP and form government with outside support from the Congress.

Some state Congress leaders have said the party should back the Sena to keep the BJP out of power.

Sharad Pawar, though, has maintained his party will occupy opposition benches in the assembly.

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