Sena, NCP disgruntled over paltry numbers in proposed seat-sharing | Mumbai news - Hindustan Times

Sena, NCP disgruntled over paltry numbers in proposed seat-sharing

Mar 08, 2024 04:23 AM IST

While Shiv Sena is expected to get 10 to 11 seats, 4 have been marked for NCP, with BJP rooting for 34 seats.

MUMBAI: The Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) central leadership reminded its two allies in Maharashtra – the Eknath Shinde-led Shiv Sena and Ajit Pawar-led Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) – about their diminished powers over a two-day meeting presided over by union home minister Amit Shah. This has elicited murmurs of displeasure among leaders of both parties over the seat-sharing numbers for the Lok Sabha elections revealed in the initial talks on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Chief Minister Eknath Shinde visited the Aapla Dawakhana (Balasaheb Thackeray health centre) near Worli on Thursday. (Bhushan Koyande/HT Photo)
Chief Minister Eknath Shinde visited the Aapla Dawakhana (Balasaheb Thackeray health centre) near Worli on Thursday. (Bhushan Koyande/HT Photo)

Also Read: Amit Shah meets Eknath Shinde; Ajit Pawar to finalise seat-sharing formula

Unlock exclusive access to the latest news on India's general elections, only on the HT App. Download Now! Download Now!

While Shiv Sena is expected to get 10 to 11 seats, 4 have been marked for NCP, with BJP rooting for 34 seats. Shah had reportedly told leaders that the ruling alliance has a better chance of winning if maximum seats are fought on BJP’s symbol.

Reacting to this, Sena leader Ramdas Kadam said the central leadership should review the numbers “or the party may lose its credibility”. NCP leaders concurred on the numbers.

A senior BJP leader, requesting anonymity said, “The strength of a candidate and winning potential of the party are benchmarks BJP has set while allocating seats. While Shinde has insisted on holding on to the constituencies held by his MPs, the BJP wants some of them to contest on the lotus symbol. Ajit Pawar does not have any bargaining power in the absence of sitting MPs.”

The BJP leadership has also reminded Sena that Shinde was made the chief minister despite BJP holding more than double MLAs and MPs. Deputy chief minister Devendra Fadnavis said on Thursday: “We have 115 MLAs (including independents and smaller parties) but we made Shinde chief minister and are supporting him.” The ruling party has also assured Sena a larger chunk in the assembly elections, scheduled later this year.

Also Read: How has Maharashtra voted in Lok Sabha elections historically?

Kadam lashed out at “the secondary treatment being meted out by BJP”. “We joined hands with BJP trusting PM Narendra Modi and Amit Shah. The party’s treatment of the allies is sending a wrong message,” he said, calling attention to his son, the Dapoli MLA Yogesh Kadam getting the short shrift by BJP leaders. “Public works minister (and BJP’s Ratnagiri in-charge) Ravindra Chavan has been taking on development works in Dapoli without taking my son into confidence. BJP ensured my defeat in 2009 despite having our alliance with them,” he said.

Of the four seats the united NCP won in 2019, BJP is insisting the Ajit Pawar-led NCP take only three – Baramati, Shirur and Raigad. BJP is looking to field Udayanraje Bhosale from Satara constituency, who won the seat in the 2019 polls as NCP candidate but lost it in the by-poll six months later after joining BJP.

NCP is also eyeing Parbhani, Shirur and Osmanabad. The Parbhani constituency has been a united Shiv Sena stronghold, and defeating Shiv Sena (UBT) will be a tall order for NCP. A similar situation prevails in Osmanabad, said NCP leaders. They feel BJP is going back on its promise of nine Lok Sabha and 90 assembly seats when the party split in July, 2023, and the Ajit Pawar-led faction joined the alliance government.

“This is an action replay of what BJP did to Chirag Paswan in Bihar, head of the Lok Janshakti Party. If they give us few seats what are the chances of them not suppressing us during the assembly elections,” expressed an NCP MLA, adding with a handful of seats, the Sharad Pawar faction comes out stronger with double the number of seats.

Responding to the palpable unrest, the party’s national working president Praful Patel said: “Seat-sharing among the three parties is yet to be finalised, which is expected to be completed in two days. We have not given up our claim.”

Deputy chief minister Devendra Fadnavis said that the ruling parties have differences over two to three seats, “which will be resolved soon with a realistic approach”.

“Leaders from alliance partners speak about seat sharing to attract attention of the leaders and push their case, but mature and big leaders like us need not pay any heed,” said Fadnavis. “They should also keep in mind that BJP is the stronger and largest party, despite which we made Shinde-saab the chief minister because we are happy that the real Sena has come to us. We will fight the elections together.”

Tell us what your First Vote will stand for in a short video & get a chance to be featured on HT’s social media handles. Click here to know more!

Stay updated with all the Breaking News and Latest News from Mumbai. Click here for comprehensive coverage of top Cities including, Bengaluru, Delhi, Hyderabad, and more across India. Stay informed on the latest happenings in World News.
Share this article

    Surendra P Gangan is Senior Assistant Editor with political bureau of Hindustan Times’ Mumbai Edition. He covers state politics and Maharashtra government’s administrative stories. Reports on the developments in finances, agriculture, social sectors among others.


    Faisal is with the political team and covers state administration and state politics. He also covers NCP.

Story Saved
Live Score
Saved Articles
My Reads
Sign out
New Delhi 0C
Saturday, May 25, 2024
Start 14 Days Free Trial Subscribe Now
Follow Us On