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NCP-Cong alliance in Gujarat to continue,says Praful Patel
February 27, 2009 00:28 IST
The Nationalist Congress Party said on Thursday it will fight the upcoming Lok Sabha elections in Gujarat with the
Congress and talks on seat sharing has already started and it is expected to be finalised in next couple of days.
Union Minister of State for Civil Aviation Praful Patel said that both the parties had an alliance in Gujarat Assembly polls held in December 2007 and hoped it will continue.
"Because of this alliance, NCP had won three assembly seats in Gujarat and we want to contest on three Lok Sabha
seats in the state," Patel, who is also an NCP general secretary, told PTI after laying the foundation stone of a Rs 130-crore integrated terminal building in Vadodara.
Talks on seat sharing with Congress has already started and it is expected to be finalised in next couple of
days, Patel said.
There are 26 Lok Sabha seats in Gujarat out of which 14 seats are held by BJP and remaining 12 by Congress.
To avoid division of votes, NCP will have an alliance with Samajwadi Party and Congress in Maharashtra during the
Lok Sabha polls, Patel said.When asked about whether projecting NCP leader Sharad Pawar [Images] as prime ministerial candidate will affect poll alliance with Congress, Patel replied that every political party has right to project its leader as prime ministerial candidate.
Gujarat's second international airport will be developed at Vadodara in next 18 months after completion of
new integrated terminal building which is expected to be over in 2010, he said.
Patel said cargo facilities will also be developed at Vadodara airport to enable farmers to export their agricultural produce and earn more money by getting good prices for their produce in the international market.
The UPA government during its five-year-rule encouraged private companies to operate air services under open sky policy, Patel said. "Now they are being encouraged to set up airports," he said.
He also requested Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi [Images] to allot more land to the airport authorities to develop non-metro airports at Rajkot, Bhavnagar, Jamnagar, Bhuj, Surat [Images] and other places.