SP wants alliance with Cong, NCP for Maha assembly polls

Mumbai: Samajwadi Party today called for an alliance with Maharashtra’s ruling Congress-NCP combine in the upcoming assembly elections to prevent “communal forces” from coming to power in the state.

“What we need right now is an alliance of secular parties in Maharashtra to keep communal forces at bay. I propose an alliance with the Congress and NCP so that there is no division of secular votes. We are ready for an alliance with a practical seat-sharing arrangement for the upcoming polls,” SP’s Maharashtra unit chief Abu Azmi told reporters.

Reminding Congress of the “grave mistake” it committed in the Lok Sabha polls in Bihar by not forging an alliance with Ramvilas Paswan’s LJP, which then joined hands with BJP, Azmi said such a situation should be avoided in Maharashtra assembly elections.

He also criticised BJP’s decision to elevate Amit Shah as party president.

“Amit Shah sowed the seeds of hatred in UP to polarise voters ahead of Lok Sabha elections. Today he is a great man in BJP’s eyes. I ask the Maharashtra government to be ready as these people will try to communalise the atmosphere and may create violence for electoral gains,” Azmi said.

Azmi said since leadership of both Shiv Sena and MNS had become weak and Uddhav Thackeray and his cousin Raj could no longer run a government by remote control, they were interested in becoming chief ministers.

“We had ideological differences with Balasaheb Thackeray. But he never dreamt of becoming the CM. He used to control the ministers with a remote control. But now Uddhav and Raj Thackeray have become weak. They want the CM’s chair as the batteries of their remote control have gone weak,” he said.

Criticising the railway budget, Azmi said the proposals for public-private partnership and Foreign Direct Investment were aimed at benefiting the corporate houses.

“Modi fought Lok Sabha elections with the help of corporate houses and after winning he is returning the favour. In the railway budget presented yesterday Modi hasn’t given a thought to 70 per cent of the people who are needy. PPP and FDI in railway projects announced in the budget will benefit none but the corporate houses,” he said.

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