Nashik: Republican Party of India (RPI)
president Ramdas Athawale on Friday supported the Shiv Sena and
BJP`s demand for a minimum support price of Rs 6,000 per
quintal of cotton.
Talking to reporters here, the former Lok Sabha MP
said the demand was justified. RPI will take out a "funeral
procession" of the Congress-NCP-led Democratic Front
government in Mumbai tomorrow, he said.
Athawale hoped the newly formed Sena-BJP-RPI alliance
will win majority of the municipal council and corporation
polls due early next year as Dalit voters have changed their
mind considering his party`s 20-year-long "bad experience" of
allying with Congress and NCP.
Asked whether RPI was following Uttar Pradesh Chief
Minister Mayawati`s pattern of "social engineering" in the
local body polls in Maharashtra, he said "we are adopting
To a question, the former Minister said BJP won the
last month`s bypoll to Khadakwasla Assembly seat in Pune
district due to RPI`s Dalit votes.
The RPI leader slammed Union Minister Sharad Pawar,
saying he had formed his party NCP over the foreign origin
issue of Congress President Sonia Gandhi, but later joined
hands with the same outfit.
"Both Congress and NCP came together for power. But
the Shiv Sena, BJP and RPI have come together on the basis of
a common programme," Athawale maintained.
Athawale demanded 30 seats in the poll-bound Nashik
Municipal Corporation (NMC), currently ruled by the saffron
Supporting social worker Anna Hazare`s agitation for a
strong Lokpal Bill, Athawale said the Gandhian should take RPI
members on his core committee.