AS THE countdown to the civic elections catches steam, hectic parleys between the Congress and the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) were on to finalise an alliance. Meanwhile, the Shiv Sena and BJP, after breaking their ties, have decided to start the process of releasing their list of candidates for both Pune and Pimpri Chinchwad from Monday. Even after multiple rounds of talks, the Congress and NCP had failed to finalise their seat-sharing agreement for both Pune and Pimpri Chinchwad. Sources in the NCP said the Congress leadership has presented a new formula that will be the subject of discussion now. Senior leaders of the party are scheduled to meet late on Sunday evening to take a final call about the alliance. These rounds of talks come even as former deputy chief minister and NCP leader Ajit Pawar on Saturday expressed confidence about a positive outcome of the various rounds of talks.
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“Seats will be divided between the parties depending on the winning chances of the candidates. In some seats, Congress has stronger candidates and in some, we have. We have reached an agreement in 80 per cent of the seats and the differences in the 20 per cent has to be ironed out,” he said.
Senior NCP leaders said the Congress had come up with a fresh agreement on Sunday morning, which will now form the topic of discussion between the leaders. “We are trying to iron out the differences as best as we can but the Congress also has to compromise,” said a NCP leader who is part of the final discussions. NCP leaders said they are ready with their own list for both Pune and Pimpri Chinchwad, and in case, the talks fail they will release the names.
The late night meeting between NCP and Congress did not result into anything fruitful. The stalemate continues with the part leaders scheduled to meet again.
Meanwhile, Shiv Sena and BJP will start releasing their list of candidates from Monday. Both the parties now want to gear up for the battle. However, aspirants have still not revealed their cards. Many have started door-to-door campaign in their wards to increase their winning chances. The BJP will also release their manifesto in the next few days.