NCP's Sharad Pawar wielding tactics continue
NCP chief Sharad Pawar bowls a googly with his uncertain remark over Sena's CM demand even as the three parties discuss govt formation.
NCP boss Sharad Pawar never ceases to surprise his allies and opponents alike when it comes to dealing with complicated political situations. When his party, the Congress and Shiv Sena have begun discussing the formation of the non-BJP government, he still seems uncertain over meeting the Sena's demand for the CM's post.
Pawar's statement from Nagpur, where he reviewed the rain-affected farms and met distressed farmers on Friday to understand the damage, could be interpreted as the NCP's reservations over allowing the Sena a full-term CM. "If someone asks for the chief minister's post, we will think about it," the NCP chief said, as against NCP's chief spokesperson Nawab Malik's information that the Sena would get the CM's position. "The process to form a government has begun. It will run for full five years," said Pawar.
When asked about the sharing of power, Pawar said he would think about the Sena's demand for the CM's office. However, he was confident of running the government for five years.
A section in the party wants the post shared. The NCP and Sena almost got the same numbers in the Assembly polls last month. The three parties have made a common minimum programme that their respective high command will examine before giving the go-ahead. However, a more important component of the three-way formation will be sharing of power, and nothing can move forward before that is dealt with.
Why just five?
Sanjay Raut, Shiv Sena MP
Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut said his party would not only get the CM for five years, but the party wants its CM to rule the state for the next 25 years.
"We want that the chief minister should be from the Shiv Sena for the next 25 years, why are you asking about just the next five years?" he said.
According to sources, the Sena has offered the NCP and Congress deputy CM's post each in exchange of the five-year CM. As far as the number of ministerial berths is concerned, a ratio of one berth per four legislators has been proposed for sharing a 43-member council of ministers (including the CM). A delegation of the three parties will meet Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari on Saturday to seek farm assistance. Former CM Devendra Fadnavis also met the governor to demand the same and let the CM's relief fund for healthcare be operated by the Raj Bhavan.
BJP keeps its cards hidden
Former CM Prithviraj Chavan addressing the press yesterday. Pic/ Atul Kamble
The BJP which is in a three-day organisational meeting in Mumbai feels that no other parties would be able to make the government. "Maharashtra won't accept a drama of three political parties," said former minister Ashish Shelar, adding, "The state is watching the drama. Earlier, people went to Matoshree (Thackeray residence) because they respected late Balasaheb Thackeray. But now the power-hungry people are visiting five-star hotels and resorts to meet like-minded people. We will reveal our strategy in due course of time," he said.
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