Farm loan waiver, unemployment, secularism top Sena-NCP-Congress Maharashtra CMP

Though the details of the CMP have not been made public, sources said that it includes issues like farm loan waiver, unemployment, higher MSPs to the rain-hit farmers of the state, rotational chief ministership and secularism etc.

Farm loan waiver, unemployment, secularism top Sena-NCP-Congress Maharashtra CMP

MUMBAI: As the central leaders of the Shiv Sena, NCP and Congress are slated to take a final call on the draft of the common minimum programme for Maharashtra, sources said on Friday that issues like farm loan waiver, rising unemployment and secularism remains high on their agenda.

Though the details of the CMP have not been made public, sources said that it includes issues like farm loan waiver, unemployment, higher MSPs to the rain-hit farmers of the state, rotational chief ministership and secularism etc.

Uddhav Thackeray-led Shiv Sena, which accords high importance to the issues troubling the state's farmers, has been pressing for a complete farm loan waiver and rebate in electricity dues.

Shiv Sena also wants immediate cash payment for crop damage to farmers with the focus on the education and health sectors of the state.   

The three parties also agree on issues like rising unemployment among the youths in Maharashtra and reportedly favour giving reservation to Marathis in government jobs.

Rotational chief minister for 2.5 years is the other key demand of the Uddhav camp, and as per sources, the Shiv Sena and Sharad Pawar's NCP have agreed on that. It has also been reportedly decided that Congress, which is the third player in proposed coalition, will be given the deputy chief minister's post till the term of the new assembly ends.

The three parties are also likely to allocate portfolios as ''16+ 14+12'' formula when the NCP-Shiv Sena and Congress coalition government comes to power.

As per the agreement between the three parties, NCP is likely to get the home ministry, Shiv Sena is expected to keep finance and urban development ministries, while Congress is most likely to be given the Assembly Speaker's post. The deputy speaker's post is expected to be given to NCP. 

Sources also revealed that Sonia Gandhi-led Congress wants Shiv Sena to leave its ''Hindutva'' agenda and make a commitment on secularism.

It is to be noted that Shiv Sena has been championing the Hindutva cause for long and the party has played a major role in the Ram temple movement and supported its former NDA ally BJP on various issues like abrogation of Article 370, NRC, triple talaq etc.

Congress, Shiv Sena and NCP top brass will discuss the draft of the common minimum programme for Maharashtra with their respective party chiefs - Sonia Gandhi, Uddhav Thackeray and Sharad Pawar - on Friday.

The three parties had on Thursday finalised a draft on the CMP for a coalition government in Maharashtra after several rounds of hectic parleys over the last two days.

 

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At a joint press conference held by Shiv Sena leader Eknath Shinde, Congress' Prithviraj Chavan and NCP's Jayant Patil on Thursday, they said that a final call in this regard will be taken by the heads of the three parties after a discussion among themselves.

"We all met and discussed the common minimum program. We made our report. We will submit our draft to party President of respective parties. Party presidents may discuss it and take a final call," they said on Thursday. 

Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackrey is slated to visit rural areas and meet farmers who have been badly affected by unseasonal rain in the state. Uddhav will return to Mumbai tonight and hold a meeting with his party leaders over the CMP draft, said sources.

President's Rule was imposed in the state on Thursday after Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari's report to Centre that no stable government was possible in Maharashtra under the current political scenario.

Union Home Minister and BJP chief Amit Shah, however, said that any party which has the numbers can still approach the governor. 

"Even today if anyone has the numbers they can approach the governor. The governor has not denied the chance to anyone. A learned lawyer like Kapil Sibal is putting forth childish arguments like 'we were denied a chance to form government'."

Shiv Sena and BJP contested the recently-held assembly elections together but failed to reach an agreement for government formation. The Shiv Sena's demand of 50-50 government formula, asking for the chief minister's post of two and half years was not accepted by the BJP.