Mumbai: Severe differences have surfaced among the ruling Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) partners especially close on the heels of Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray’s meeting with PM Narendra Modi and tete-a-tete between NCP Chief Sharad Pawar and poll strategist Prashant Kishor.
The Maharashtra Pradesh Congress Committee President Nana Patole on Saturday has reiterated that the party will go solo in the ensuing elections to the local and civil bodies and also to the assembly and Lok Sabha. At Amravati, Patole, who is on his tour in the Vidarbha region, declared that the Congress party will emerge as the single largest party in the 2024 assembly elections in Maharashtra.
"We have already announced our policy to fight independently in the forthcoming elections. If Congress says at the last moment, then it will lead to backstabbing. So, NCP and Shiv Sena can also start their preparations,’’ said Patole.
Patole’s statement is crucial especially when Pawar on NCP’s 22nd foundation day on June 10 had said that the MVA government will complete five-year term and three partners Shiv Sena, NCP and Congress will do well in assembly and Lok Sabha polls slated for 2024 thereby indicating that the alliance will continue in future also.
Shiv Sena and NCP have repeatedly said that the three partners will contest forthcoming assembly and general elections and also the ensuing BrihanMumbai Municipal Corporation polls together in a serious bid to defeat BJP. However, Patole has sung a different tune indicating that all is not well among the three ruling partners. Congress has never hidden its displeasure because of lack of due share in running the government. Recently, a section of the party voiced against the cancellation of 33% quota for backward classes in promotions.
However, party insiders believe that the Congress will have to strive to strengthen the organisation and reach out to the voters in a bid to regain its past glory and its leading position.
Patole said, “The Congress is the soul of the UPA, so the prime minister of the country will also belong to the Congress. Prashant Kishor has also said twice that Rahul Gandhi will be the prime minister.’’ "Everyone knows that the UPA-led government formed because of Congress President Sonia Gandhi’s initiative was successful twice in the country,’’ he noted.