‘NCP will be with Third Front if UPA doesn’t win’

March 31st, 2009 - 6:46 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, March 31 (IANS) The Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), a key ally of the Congress, said Tuesday that it would approach the Third Front if the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) did not get a majority in the Lok Sabha elections.
NCP general secretary D.P. Tripathi told reporters that the party would go to the Third Front because the Congress had “unfortunately disbanded” the UPA by not having a national alliance and stitching up regional tie-ups instead.

Tripathi, who announced the party’s 38 candidates from different states, said: “The Congress gave such illogical arguments that we can form the government at the national level but we will have alliances at the state-level.”

The NCP’s candidates declared Tuesday include its chief Sharad Pawar from Madha and his daughter Supriya Sule from Baramati in Maharashtra and party general secretary Tariq Anwar from Katihar in Bihar.

Tripathi said: “Nowhere in the world you will find such a situation. The UPA is intact as government, but in a dismantled state outside the government.”

He cited the instances of Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) and Lok Janshakti Party (LJP), which are part of the UPA government but are not the Congress allies in the elections.

But the NCP leader also said his party was in talks with the Congress over sharing two seats in Goa and a tie-up in Gujarat.

Asked about the dichotomy of his NCP having an alliance with the Congress in Maharashtra but not in many other states, he said: “Our suggestion for a national alliance was not adopted by the Congress and so we were forced to adopt our (own) electoral policies for different states.”

Accordingly, he cited the NCP’s seat-sharing agreements with the Biju Janata Dal (BJD) in Orissa, regional parties in Meghalaya and the Left parties in Assam.

Tripathi announced contestants for 18 seats in Maharashtra, four from Kerala, three from Assam, two each in Uttar Pradesh and Haryana as well as one each from Bihar, Daman-Diu, Goa, Andaman and Nicobar, Karnataka, Lakshadweep, Manipur, Meghalaya and Orissa.

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