Shiv Sena to contest Gujarat assembly polls: Joshi

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Nagpur, Nov 3 (UNI) The Shiv Sena would contest next month's Assembly elections in Gujarat on its own if it could not work out an alliance with the BJP, senior party leader and Rajya Sabha member Manohar Joshi said today.

Speaking to reporters here, Mr Joshi said the Sena had decided to contest ''some seats'' in Gujarat, but did not specify the number.

''We will make all efforts to contest the elections together with the BJP. However, if we are unable to work out a seat-sharing arrangement, the Shiv Sena will enter the fray alone,'' the former Maharashtra Chief Minister said.

Asked to comment on the decision of the Maharashtra government to advance the winter session of the state legislature by two weeks in view of the Gujarat polls, Mr Joshi said it was ''inappropriate'' in a democratic set-up. The government should have taken the leaders of the opposition groups in the two houses into confidence, he said.

The decision on shifting the dates should have been made in the Business Advisory Committee (BAC), he said.

The final decision on boycotting the winter session, now slated to begin in Nagpur on November 19, would be made by the leaders concerned, Mr Joshi said. Leader of the Opposition in the Legislative Assembly Ramdas Kadam had recently said the Shiv Sena was ''contemplating'' a boycott of the session, as the decision to advance it was ''unconstitutional.'' UNI

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