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Bonhomie reaffirmed,in sports and politics

After being isolated by the local unit of the NCP which had kept the Congress away from power in the local civic body...

Written by Express News Service | Pune |
February 9, 2009 12:05:02 am

After being isolated by the local unit of the NCP which had kept the Congress away from power in the local civic body,there is some cheer for the probable Congress candidate from Pune and sitting MP Suresh Kalmadi,with NCP chief Sharad Pawar indicating his support for the Congress leader.

“We are together in sports and would be seen together in other fields as well,” Pawar told reporters after the annual general body meeting of the Maharashtra Olympic Association on Sunday. Pawar and Kalmadi were sharing the same dais after a long time.

Pawar was elected president of the association and Kalmadi vice-president. Though it was not the political arena,the coming together of both the leaders ahead of the Lok Sabha elections is being seen as an advantage for Kalmadi.

“The comment of the NCP chief should put an end to the anger of local NCP leaders against Kalmadi. NCP workers will have to follow their leader’s words,” a Congress leader said.

The local unit of Congress and NCP had been at loggerhead in the city with leaders of both the parties taking on each other in the 2007 civic elections. The NCP joined hands with the Shiv Sena and the BJP to keep the Congress out of power in the Pune civic body.

Though there have been strong differences with the Shiv Sena and the BJP,the NCP has been able to keep the alliance,called the Pune Pattern,intact.

Last month,the Congress and the NCP,for the first time in two years,had come together in the PMC to strip the chairman of the PMC standing committee,a post held by the Shiv Sena corporator Shyam Deshpande,of his powers to prepare the budget.

However,the threat by Sena to break the alliance made the NCP hand over the powers back the Sena corporator.

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