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Early polls unlikely: Shinde

Tara Shankar Sahay in New Delhi | February 04, 2004 23:23 IST

Maharashtra Chief Minister Sushilkumar Shinde on Wednesday said assembly polls in Maharashtra are unlikely to be advanced.

Talking to reporters in New Delhi after a meeting with Congress chief Sonia Gandhi, Shinde said: "The Nationalist Congress Party [Congress' coalition partner in Maharashtra] has expressed reservations regarding early polls...I too am of the opinion that there should be no early dissolution of the House."

He said consultations are on with all Democratic Front constituents to know there mind.

He hinted that some senior party leaders like former chief minister Vilasrao Deshmukh favour early polls. "But we need to look into the pros and cons [before a decision is made]," he said.

Shinde asserted that the Congress-NCP combine will win at least 42 seats in the coming Lok Sabha elections.

The composition of the 288-seat Maharashtra assembly is -- Congress 75 seats, NCP 58, Independents 12, Shiv Sena 69, Bharatiya Janata Party 56 and others 18.


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