Gujarat NCP demands seven Lok Sabha seats from CongressMarch 5th, 2009 - 4:35 pm ICT by IANS
Ahmedabad, March 5 (IANS) The Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) wants to field candidates from seven significant Lok Sabha seats in Gujarat even as negotiations are on with the Congress, which wants to fight on all the 26 seats in the state.
The key Lok Sabha seats being demanded by Sharad Pawar’s NCP are Rajkot, Dahod, Anand, Godhra, Bharuch, Ahmedabad (East) and Kutch. The NCP’s state unit believes it will get to fight the April 30 Lok Sabha polls from at least four of these.
“We are expecting to get at least four seats, if not all among the seats demanded from the Congress Parliamentary Board (CPB) for Gujarat,” Gujarat NCP president Jayant Patel told IANS from Anand over telephone.
He said the list of seats would be given to the Congress national leadership in New Delhi by March 10 when a party delegation from Gujarat visits the national capital.
The NCP in Gujarat has raised the demand for seven seats at a time when the state unit of the Congress is ready with a preliminary list of candidates from all the 26 Lok Sabha seats. This list too is to be presented to Congress president Sonia Gandhi March 10 for finalisation of candidates.
“Till now there had been no consensus at the state level on NCP seats in Gujarat. There had not even been any talk about the demand by NCP for Lok Sabha seats in Gujarat within the state Congress unit so far,” the Congress’ Shaktisinh Gohil, leader of opposition in the Gujarat assembly, said.
He said the issue of seat-sharing would have to be discussed by the parties’ central leaderships.
During the last Gujarat assembly polls in 2007, the NCP had won three seats in the 182-member assembly.