Mumbai: Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), which parted ways with Congress, ending their 15-year-long alliance in Maharashtra ahead of the 15 October assembly polls, on Sunday said it was holding talks with Samajwadi Party (SP) for a possible tie-up for the elections.
“We were always of the view that smaller and like-minded parties should align with us so that we can fight elections on the basis of ideologies. We were even offering the SP seats, but they were talking with the Congress party. It is now late but we are still trying to materialise the alliance,” NCP spokesperson Nawab Malik told PTI.
The development comes a day after Samajwadi Party leader Abu Azmi accused Congress of betrayal for “backtracking” on alliance with his party. Congress had announced three days back that it would join hands with the SP for the state elections. SP spokesman Abdul Qadir Chaudhary had announced that his party would contest eight seats in alliance in Congress.
However, Azmi had on Saturday said that the top state Congress leaders backtracked and told him that their party’s central leadership was not in favour of the alliance. When asked about Samajwadi Party’s Maharashtra unit president Abu Azmi’s criticism of NCP chief Sharad Pawar, Malik said that past should be forgotten in the larger interest of the state. “If someone realises his mistakes, there is no point in raking up an old issue. It should be forgotten in the larger interest of the state,” he said.
SP said that it was looking forward to an alliance with the NCP. “We are in talks with senior NCP leaders and there may be an official announcement soon. We are looking forward to an alliance with them,” SP spokesperson Rais Shaikh said.