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Sunday 19 January 2020

NCP, INC still talking; Shiv Sena on tenterhooks

NCP and INC rejected the name 'Mahashiva Agadi' proposed by Shiv Sena as it hints at the name of one of the allies in the proposed coalition

The manner in which the Indian National Congress (INC) and NCP are deliberating upon the alliance with Shiv Sena, there seems no possibility of a full-fledged government in Maharashtra soon, more so since the initial demand of the ‘secular’ part of the proposed coalition of dropping all ideological markers spooked the party founded by Balasaheb Thackeray. The Shiv Sena is now expecting a more acceptable set of demands by the other two parties to emerge from their meeting to be held today.

The Shiv Sena’s expectations from this meeting can be gauged from the fact that its leader Sanjay Raut spoke of the possibility of a new government in Maharashtra being formed in the first week of December. Party chief Uddhav Thackeray will meet his MLAs on Friday to inform them about the delay in forming the government. In this meeting, the party will discuss further strategies, too.

At the INC-NCP meeting, leaders will discuss issues such as the name of the coalition if the three parties form the government. If the three parties come together to form the Maharashtra government, what will be the stand of the two parties in the upcoming BMC election? That is the other question. Elections to many civic bodies including the BMC are to be held in 2022.

INC and NCP politicians are not comfortable with the name Mahashiva Agadi (Mahagathbandhan with Shiv Sena). One of them said, “We do not want the name of any party in the alliance. Even in NDA or UPA, no constituent of the alliance is named.”

While the INC and NCP allied in the election under the name of Agadi, the BJP, Shiv Sena, RPI and other smaller parties came together in the name of Mahayuti.

Earlier, this meeting was scheduled to take place on Tuesday, but due to the busy schedule of INC leaders on Indira Gandhi’s birth anniversary, the meeting time was extended.

According to sources, the meeting will be held on Wednesday (today), which INC’s Mallikarjun Kharge, Ahmed Patel, KC Venugopal and some State leaders may attend. From the NCP, Praful Patel, Sunil Tatkare, Ajit Pawar and Jayant Patil are likely to attend the meeting.

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