New Delhi: The Nationalist Congress Part (NCP) led by Sharad Pawar will meet on Wednesday to decide whether it will stay in the Congress-led UPA coalition government or quit and provide external support to it.
According to reports, the Maharashtra unit of NCP has hinted that if the party’s equation with Congress changes in Delhi, it will be untenable to continue its alliance at the centre.
However despite standoff, the NCP yesterday hinted that a solution could be found to its current impasse with the Congress.
"I think a solution would be found. Coordination committee could be set up," a NCP leader told reporters.
NCP has long demanded the Congress to set up a coordination committee of United Progressive Alliance (UPA) parties.
Sharad Pawar’s party had on Monday deferred a decision to pull out of government, saying that it will take a final decision after more consultations with its leaders from Maharashtra.
The NCP ministers had last week conveyed their unhappiness with "some aspects of working" of the coalition government to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Congress president Sonia Gandhi.
The NCP`s grouse is that it was "not consulted" on key policy decisions at the central and state level in Maharashtra, where the two parties are in a coalition, and there is a lack of coordination with the Congress.
The Congress has sought to downplay the rift and maintained that a solution will be found through talks.
The rift between the two parties broke out after the presidential poll last week with Agriculture Minister and party chief Pawar sending a communication to the Prime Minister conveying the party`s unhappiness. The NCP had threatened to pull out of government and provide it only outside support.
Pawar reportedly told the Prime Minister and Congress president, whom he met in quick succession Thursday night and Friday morning, that the NCP would like to keep out of the government and focus on its growth for the 2014 general elections.
Though the Congress leadership has sought to mollify Pawar, the NCP leader has so far remained adamant on their stand.
NCP, sources said, wants it to be consulted in key political appointments and the ruling coalition not to be run "as a single-party government".
NCP, which shares power with Congress in Maharashtra, has co-governed for three consecutive terms so a rift between the two sides could hamper their poll prospects in the next assembly elections in 2014.
With IANS Inputs