It makes sense to dump NCP,faction tells Cong

Some Congress leaders have sent a letter to the Congress high command,seeking to break the alliance with the NCP as it had benefited only the NCP and not the Congress.

Written by SiddharthKelkar | Pune | Published:March 9, 2009 3:46 am

Some Congress leaders have sent a letter to the Congress high command,seeking to break the alliance with the NCP as it had benefited only the NCP and not the Congress.

“Going by the analysis of the last three Lok Sabha elections,the alliance has proved profitable for the NCP and not the Congress. If the Congress contests on its own,it can win more seats,” the letter claims.

The letter comes in the wake of the NCP making a strong demand for more seats from the Congress.

On record,the chief of the city unit of the Congress,Abhay Chhajed,denied that such a letter had been sent. “A decision regarding the alliance will be taken at a level of the high command,” he added.

A former Congress corporator,however,conceded that he was part of the team that sent the letter.

The former corporator quoted from the letter: “In 2004,the Congress vote share was down by 5.94 per cent from 1999,when the Congress did not have an alliance with the NCP. But in 2004,when the alliance was there,the NCP won 9 of 18 seats it contested,increasing their tally by three since 1999.”

The letter goes on: “On the other hand,the share of votes of the BJP and the Shiv Sena increased by 4.68 per cent in 2004 since 1999. The BSP also increased its vote share by 2.73 per cent.”

A Congress worker said,“All these parties could increase their share at the cost of Congress votes… of the 11 Congress candidates who were successful in 1999,six had lost the elections in 2004. It is observed that the NCP did not help the Congress candidate in those six constituencies.”

A senior Congress leader,who did not wish to be named,said that he agreed with the logic of not going with the NCP.

“National parties suffer due to alliances at the regional level. On the other hand,a party like the Congress has no option but tie up with like-minded parties to avoid division of secular votes. The analysis assumes significance as former chief minister Vilasrao Deshmukh has also recently made a statement that an alliance of the Congress and the NCP will always help only the NCP.”

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