Mah Cabinet expansion next week: Pawar

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Aurangabad, Maharashtra, Nov 20 (UNI) Union Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar today indicated that the expansion of Maharashtra Cabinet will be held next week.

Talking to newsmen here this evening on his arrival after attending a programme in Jalgaon, Mr Pawar, who is also the NCP president, said the ensuing Lok Sabha and Assembly elections will be held in March and September next year respectively.

However, he said the possility of holding the Lok Sabha and the Assembly elections jointly can not be ruled out.

He said both the Congress and his party, the NCP, will contest the election jointly. But, the decision over sharing of seats will be taken after the meeting of the state unit presidents of both parties.

''The chief minister is currently busy for the expansion of the Cabinet to be done next week. There are three NCP seats vacant in the Cabinet and those seats will be filled. Gadchiroli and Mumbai will be given preference while filling of these seats,'' he said.

Talking about the scenario of ensuing Lok Sabha, he said it will not be impossible to form government with the alliance of Republican Party of India (RPI) and Samajwadi Party (SP).

''We will have to hold discussions with the RPI and the SP before holding talks over seat sharing with Congress.

When he was asked about Malegaon bomb blast case, the Union Agriculture Minister refused to comment on it.

He said he had no opposition to giving reservation to the Maratha community under OBC category.

''All main parties should sit together to find out a solution over the reservation,'' he said.

The NCP president said the government has not banned ethanol, which can be produced anywhere in the country.

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