Sena to head first half of 5-year term, Dy CM post for Cong, says NCP leader; Sena mum
As the talks for the formation of Government in Maharashtra continue among the Shiv Sena, NCP and the Congress, in a late-night development NCP sources said the Chief Minister’s post is most likely to be on a rotational basis, with the first half of the five-year term to be given to the Shiv Sena and the latter to the Sharad Pawar-headed party. The Congress is likely to have the deputy Chief Minister’s post for the full term, they said.
“So, the question of the Sena enjoying the full five-year term does not arise. The second half will have a Chief Minister from the NCP,” an NCP leader said. However, Congress sources said the issue of Chief Minister’s post was not discussed in Wednesday’s meeting.
Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut told reporters that the Chief Minister of the State will be from his party, but parried question on whether the Sena would hold the post for five years.
On Wednesday, after a marathon meeting of senior leaders of the Congress and the NCP at Pawar’s residence here, former Maharashtra Chief Minister and Congress leader Prithviraj Chavan said the alliance is hopeful of ending the spell of political uncertainty in the State and working to provide a stable Government.
However, Chavan’s confidence has not ended the suspense over the formation of a Government in Maharashtra, currently under President Rule, for two reasons: The ongoing NCP-Cong talks are inconclusive, and second, the hour-long meeting between Pawar and Prime Minister Narendra Modi has further raised curiosity about what transpired during the discussion.
Pawar, who later took to social media to announce his meeting, claimed his meeting with the Prime Minister was about farmers’ distress in Maharashtra. However, there were few takers for Pawar’s emphatic denial of any political discussion during his meeting with Modi.
“Due to President Rule in the State, your urgent intervention is highly necessitated. I shall be grateful if you could take immediate steps to initiate massive relief measures to ameliorate distressed farmers,” the three-page memorandum given by Pawar to Modi said.
Asked by reporters about the Government formation in Maharashtra, the NCP chief declined to comment. The Pawar-Modi meeting, which went on for 50 minutes, took place against the backdrop of hectic parleys between the Congress-NCP and the Shiv Sena to form a Government in Maharashtra. Two days ago, Modi had praised NCP MPs for maintaining the decorum in Parliament by not entering the Well of the House during proceedings.
The NCP and the Congress leaders met in the evening at Pawar’s residence in Delhi to discuss how to partner with the Shiv Sena, the long-term BJP ally which recently ended its alliance with the ruling party over a power tussle in Maharashtra.
Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut exuded confidence that a Government led by his party will be in place by next month in Maharashtra. “We are inching towards the Government formation. The picture will become clear in the next two days and a popular Government led by the Shiv Sena will be in place by December,” he told reporters.
The Shiv Sena has called a meeting of its MLAs and senior leaders on November 22 in Mumbai, a party leader said.
Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray will address the meeting which is expected to deliberate on the party’s line of action in the backdrop of the three main non-BJP parties making efforts to form government in Maharashtra.
Asked about the meeting between the NCP and the Congress, Raut said there will be a “full stop to it”, implying that the two parties have almost completed their discussions on Government formation.
Senior leaders of the Congress and the NCP held talks on Wednesday with a focus on firming up the modalities for taking a shot at government formation in Maharashtra. Congress leaders Ahmed Patel, Jairam Ramesh, Mallikarjun Kharge, Prithviraj Chavan, K C Venugopal and Balasaheb Thorat attended the meeting. NCP leaders Supriya Sule, Ajit Pawar, Jayant Patil and Nawab Malik were also present.
Both, the Congress president Sonia Gandhi and her predecessor refused to comment on the progress being made in the formation of a new government in Maharashtra. “No comments,” Sonia said in Parliament House when reporters posed questions on the political situation in Maharashtra.
Shiv Sena threw another ring in the circle that the real picture of the Government formation in the State will become clear in the next two days.
Results of the October 21 Assembly polls were declared on October 24 and President’s rule was imposed in the State on November 12 after no party or combine staked claim to form the new Government.
Thursday, 21 November 2019 | PNS | New Delhi
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