Maharashtra: Will not join hands with BJP-Shiv Sena post polls, says Prakash Ambedkar

Mumbai: Bharip Bahujan Mahasangh leader Prakash Ambedkar Tuesday said the Vanchit Bahujan Aghadi (VBA) will not join hands with the BJP and Shiv Sena post polls “in any given situation” and would, instead, sit in the opposition. The VBA is an alliance between the BBM and Asaduddin Owaisi’s All India Majlis-e-Ittehad-ul-Muslimeen. Ambedkar’s remark came against the backdrop of Congress allegations that the VBA fighting Lok Sabha polls separately would benefit the BJP-Shiv Sena combine.

Interacting with a news outlet here, Ambedkar said the VBA could join forces with “secular parties” if they agreed to accommodate its agenda post polls. “We will not go with the Shiv Sena and the BJP after the elections in any given situation. We will rather sit in the opposition,” he said.

He said VBA, however, could join the next government if “secular parties” accommodated its agenda.

“We will sit in the opposition if they do not agree to accommodate our agenda,” he added. To a question, Ambedkar attributed the criticism of the VBA by its rivals to the threat it was posing to “dynastic politics”. “Some people are unhappy as their dynastic politics will end due to the aghadi,” he said, without naming any party.

Ambedkar also said the decision on whether he should contest the election from Akola or Solapur is yet to be taken. “We are still debating it. We are also debating whether I should contest the election or not in the first place (so that could dispense time for campaigning),” he added.

Ambedkar also alleged that the neither the Congress nor the NCP could take on the “RSS-controlled BJP” and the Shiv Sena. He added the VBA would win a “good number of seats” in the general election.

Speaking during the same event before Ambedkar, Congress leader Prithviraj Chavan had claimed the VBA’s decision not to align with the opposition parties will eventually prove beneficial to the NDA. The Congress and NCP, which are contesting the election together, were wooing the VBA. The VBA, however, is contesting the polls separately. Maharashtra has 48 Lok Sabha seats.

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