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NCP dismisses reports of giving up its claim on Pune seat for 2019 Lok Sabha elections

Senior NCP leader Ajit Pawar on Saturday dismissed reports that his party had given up its claim on the Pune Lok Sabha seat. He said negotiations with the Congress for upcoming Lok Sabha polls are going on on eight seats including Pune.

NCP dismisses reports of giving up its claim on Pune seat for 2019 Lok Sabha elections

Pune: Senior NCP leader Ajit Pawar on Saturday dismissed reports that his party had given up its claim on the Pune Lok Sabha seat. He said negotiations with the Congress for upcoming Lok Sabha polls are going on on eight seats including Pune.

"There is no truth in media reports. The decision of sharing 40 seats with the allied parties has been taken, but the discussion on eight seats, including Pune, is still going on", the former deputy chief minister said. Maharashtra has a total of 48 Lok Sabha seats.

When pointed out that Pune constituency traditionally belonged to the Congress, Pawar said, "It was decided that if some constituency belongs to the NCP but the party had faced defeat in the past and if one of the allied parties has better strength on that seat, the NCP will give away that seat".

"Similarly, if the NCP has a stronghold on a particular seat, the allied party will leave that seat for us", he said.

Pawar added that NCP chief Sharad Pawar and his Congress counterpart Rahul Gandhi are holding discussions at the national level. "We are positive and we are trying to bring all the like-minded people together. We are working out on how to bind all the secular parties together to throw the communal parties out of power," he said.

In 2014 Lok Sabha polls, Anil Shirole of the BJP had defeated Vishwajeet Kadam of Congress from Pune. The seat was traditionally represented by Congress veteran Suresh Kalmadi.