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Alternate govt in Maharashtra? Sharad Pawar to discuss political impasse with Sonia Gandhi

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Mumbai, Nov 01: Putting to rest all speculation on NCP role in Maharashtra governent formation to rest, party chief Sharad Pawar on Friday made clear that he had no proposal from the Sena and had not spoken with its chief Uddhav Thackeray over the power dynamics in the state.

Several media reports suggest Uddhav Thackeray and the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader have spoken on the phone.

Sharad Pawar

Reportedly, Pawar is set to meet Congress interim president Sonia Gandhi in the national capital on Sunday to discuss the political situation in the state.

Speculation has been rife over the backchannel talks between Congress-NCP and Shiv Sena following Sena's demand of 50:50 chiefministership with BJP in the coalition government.

Buzz about the Sena talks with its rival became louder when its leader Sanjay Raut met with Pawar last afternoon.

"I met Nationalist Congress Party chief Sharad Pawar at his residence today. I had come to wish him on the occasion of Diwali. We also discussed the politics in Maharashtra," Sanjay Raut told news agency ANI.

Maharashtra will have Shiv Sena chief minister, says Sanjay Raut

The stalemate over government formation refuses to end with Shiv Sena refusing to compromise its demand of getting an equal share in the chief minister's post.

In case, it is not given the post of CM, the party may seek for the Home, Finance and Urban Development portfolios. Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis is unlikely to agree to these demands.

Although both parties together have a comfortable majority, the Shiv Sena has been insisting on a 50:50 formula, which Maharashtra Chief Minister, Devendra Fadnavis denies was ever spoken about. The NCP and Congress have made it clear now that it would sit in opposition.

The BJP won 105 of the state's 288 seats and the Sena finished with 56 in the state election last week. Together, they are comfortably past the 145-majority mark. Pawar's NCP placed third in the Maharashtra election with 54 seats, just two behind the Shiv Sena. The Congress won 44.

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