Congress-NCP stalemate continues over govt formation
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Last Updated: Monday, November 02, 2009, 13:04
Mumbai: Stalemate over portfolios between the Congress and NCP continues to delay the process of government formation in Maharashtra more than 10 days after the ruling coalition stormed back to power in the Assembly Elections.

Congress sources said the party leadership is firm that it should get the Home department from NCP while the Sharad Pawar-led party is unwilling to part with the key ministry.

Apart from Home, the Congress wants Power, Finance or Rural Development.

Earlier, the Congress wanted the NCP to give all the four key portfolios but later decided that it should get at least two.

Congress is also eyeing the Assembly Speaker's post. The party has also ruled out sticking to the 1999 formula of equal sharing of portfolios.

"The formula is not sacrosanct. The NCP itself deviated from it in 2004 and now the situation has changed. Congress will be the bigger partner and the party's strength of 82 seats should be reflected in the ministry formation as well," a senior Congress leader said.

Last night's scheduled meeting between Congress-NCP state leadership did not take place.

MPCC chief Manikrao Thakre said NCP leaders had conveyed to him that their internal discussions on the issue had not been completed.

Sources said 22:20 formula for portfolio sharing is being worked out.

The ruling combine has time till tomorrow for the new government to be sworn-in.

The term of the outgoing Legislative Assembly expires tomorrow and the opposition Shiv Sena-BJP has demanded imposition of President's Rule in the state if the new government is not in place.

Bureau Report

First Published: Monday, November 02, 2009, 13:04

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