Congress has said that Maharashtra governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari should invite the second largest alliance —Congress and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) — to form the government in the state because the BJP-Shiv Sena combine has “refused” to do so.
“Maharashtra’s governor should invite NCP-Congress to form the government now that BJP-Shiv Sena has refused to do so,” Milind Deora, former Mumbai Congress president, tweeted.
Koshyari had on Saturday evening invited BJP, the single largest party in the state after the polls last month, to form the government in the state.
Deora’s plan for the Congress-NCP alliance was met with resistance from within his own party. Former Mumbai Congress chief Sanjay Nirupam, who often counters Deora, said it was “impossible” for Congress-NCP to form a government.
“In the current political arithmetic in Maharashtra, it’s just impossible for Congress-NCP to form any govt. For that we need Shiv Sena. And we must not think of sharing power with Shiv Sena under any circumstances,” Nirupam tweeted.
BJP and its pre-poll ally Sena have been at loggerheads over the power-sharing formula. Uddhav Thackeray-led Sena insists that both the parties have agreed to a “50:50” deal under which the chief minister’s post will be shared by both the parties. BJP maintains that no such agreement was ever made.
As the deadlock with BJP continued, Sena had on Thursday moved its MLAs to Hotel Rangsharda in Bandra West, about 3km from Thackerays’ residence. A day later, the party shifted the lawmakers to Retreat Hotel, an isolated resort in Mumbai’s Madh island. On Sunday, Sena boss Uddhav Thackeray and his wife Rashmi Thackeray met the MLAs.
The Congress had shifted its legislators to a resort in Jaipur in Congress-ruled Rajasthan over fears of poaching by rivals. Senior Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge met the MLAs on Sunday to listen to their views on government formation, news agency PTI reported.
BJP is the single-largest party in the 288-member Maharashtra assembly with 105 MLAs. BJP has the support of 15 independent legislators, but it needs another 25 seats to reach the majority mark. BJP’s pre-poll ally Shiv Sena won 56 seats in the state polls, while Congress won 44 seats and NCP got 54 seats.