NEW DELHI: Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) Chief Sharad Paward sprang a surprise and gave a jolt to Shiv Sena. Speaking to the media on Monday in Parliament, Pawar took a complete U-turn on forming government in Maharashtra along with Shiv Sena and Congress. He is supposed to meet AICC interim president Sonia Gandhi later in the day.
Pawar said that as the BJP and Shiv Sena have fought the Assembly elections together, they have to choose their paths and not NCP or Congress.
He said, "BJP-Shiv Sena fought together, we (NCP) and Congress fought together in the elections. They have to choose their path and we will do our politics”.
According to Congress sources, during the meeting, the heads of the two alliance parties are likely to discuss the next course of action, in politically fractured Maharashtra where President's rule was imposed last Tuesday and a possible alliance with the ideologically opposite Shiv Sena. Party sources said pre-poll alliance partners- Congress and NCP- are working on the common minimum programme (CMP) with the Shiv Sena for the government formation.
Congress sources said that before saying yes to the alliance, the party wants the Shiv Sena to shed its hard Hindutva ideology and take a secular stand on several issues. He also said the NCP wants the Congress to be part of the government.
Pre-poll allies BJP and Shiv Sena contested the October 21 Assembly polls together. The BJP bagged 105 out of 288 seats while Shiv Sena managed to win 56 seats. However, the alliance fell apart after Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackarey demanded rotational chief ministerial post, a demand denied by the BJP. On the other hand, the Congress and the NCP won 44 and 54 seats respectively in the state.