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Tie-up with NCP in Maharashtra not final yet: Rau
June 29, 2004 13:39 IST
The newly appointed Maharashtra Pradesh Congress Committee chief, Prabha Rau, on Tuesday indicated that no decision has yet been taken to continue the party's alliance with the Sharad Pawar-led Nationalist Congress Party for the September-October assembly election in the state.
The Congress and NCP not only run an alliance government in Maharashtra, they also contested the recent Lok Sabha election together.
"Nothing has been finalised as yet. We have not discussed the matter in our party," Rau, who will assume office on Wednesday, told reporters in Mumbai.
There are reports of a number of senior Congress leaders blaming the party's alliance with the NCP for its poor performance in the last Lok Sabha election.
The outgoing PCC chief, Ranjit Deshmukh, had also accused the NCP of weakening the Congress base in Vidarbha and Marathwada.
Rau, who hails from Vidarbha, said the party will have to assess the role played by the Bahujan Samaj Party in dividing the Congress vote in Vidarbha and Marathwada.
The Congress won only one seat out of the total 11 in Vidarbha. "We will have to go into depth and see as to what extent the BJP has grown in the region," she said.
On the demand for statehood for Vidarbha, Rau, who lost the parliamentary election from Wardha, said the demand is not backed by popular support.
"Otherwise, how can a party, opposing the cause of the statehood for Vidarbha perform better in the Lok Sabha polls,"
she said referring to Shiv Sena's performance in Vidarbha.
Asked whether three months would be sufficient for her to gear up the party for assembly election, Rau said: "No amount of time is sufficient. If one has the will, then he can make time sufficient for the purpose."