Bhayandar : The much-hyped merger of the local Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) unit into the Shiv Sena ahead of crucial mayoral polls to the Mira Bhayandar Municipal Corporation (MBMC) seems to have hit a roadblock.

Spurred at the prospect of losing power in the MBMC, NCP strongman Gilbert Mendonca had chalked out an elaborate strategy to amalgamate the local party unit into the Sena. The proposal, an informal one, was to hand over reins of MBMC to Mendonca and in return the NCP members will merge with the Sena, sources said. Though the unison of both the parties would have catapulted their numerical strength, the figures were not enough to make them a front runner for the mayoral chair. Moreover, a section of NCP corporators appeared less keen on the sudden amalgamation with a party which had a diagonally opposite ideology.  “Such an important decision should have been discussed well in advance and the leaders ought to have sought corporators’ opinion. Unfortunately,

it is not happening in our party. Jumping into another party on the eve of elections will send a message that we are power hungry and selfish,” said a NCP corporator.

With 29 seats, BJP tops the list in the 91-member house followed by NCP-26, Congress-17, Shiv Sena-14, BVA-3, MNS-1 and Independent-1. Given the present arithmetic the saffron alliance, on the virtue of support lent by the MNS, BVA and Independents, seems to have a clear edge over their NCP-Congress alliance.

Suresh Golani

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