MAHA MINISTRY … Sena set to form government in Maharashtra with NCP and Congress support

MUMBAI: The Shiv Sena is set to form government in Maharashtra with outside support from the Congress. The NCP will back the government, and it will most likely participate in government. This, after the BJP informed Governor Koshiyari that it does not have the majority in the state assembly.

The NCP leadership is meeting soon to decide on its course of action. The Congress party has sent three senior AICC emissaries to here from Delhi to advice the central leadership on what course of action the party should take. Indications are that the party will support the Sena-NCP government from outside. There are dissenting voices in the Congress over its support to a Sena government, which is out and out anti-Muslim. But, the tricolour party will take comfort that it is doing this to keep the BJP out of power, which should hopefully satisfy Muslims.

The NCP, whom PM Modi once called the Nationalist Corruption Party, does not have any ideological hangover. Its leaders allegedly have a proclivity to make money, too much, while in power — be it in Maharashtra or at the Centrte. Sharad Pawar himself sits plum on huge acquired wealth so much so allegations are that about half of Mumbai and much of Satara are under his fiefdom or of his family’s. Pawar, however, is among the most seasoned politicians with a strong mass base in the Maratha region — his very own turf.

Pawar’s two main props in the NCP’s front, former Union minister Praful Patel and nephew Ajit Pawar were also into serious complaints of corruption in the past. A similar slur existed about the Shiv Sena too even when it started heading the Brahin Mumbai Municipal Corporation since the 1990s. The BJP sought to put some control over the Sena’s greed, but it helped only to a limited extent in controlling the Sena’s actions. ED is currently investigating several alleged misdeeds of both Sharad Pawar and Praful Patel.

As per a pre-condition put by the NCP to the Sena to divorce from the NDA first before NCP extends its help to the Sena to form government, the Sena withdrew its minister Arvind Sawant from the Modi ministry. He was holding the portfolio of heavy industries. IHN-NN


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