By Sunil Garodia
First publised on 2020-06-14 21:59:41
The Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) is once again facing a tussle. This time, it is reportedly over the sharing of the 12 Vidhan Parishad seats. As per the proportionate formula, the Shiv Sena gets 5 seats, the NCP 4 and the Congress 3. But it seems the Congress is not happy with this. It wants the seats to be shared equally among the alliance partners. Congress leader Ashok Chavan said that the alliance partners are going to have a meeting in a couple of days to solve this and other disputes. He made it clear that there are some "issues" among the MVA allies and the bureaucracy.
Just a couple of weeks ago, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi had tried to wash his hands off the mismanagement of the Covid-19 situation in the state by saying that although his party was in the alliance, it was "not a key player". Yet, when it comes to getting seats, the Congress wants an equal share. If Gandhi's party can try to punch above its weight in seat-sharing, why can't it do so to hold the state government, of which it is a partner, accountable for mismanaging the coronavirus crisis? Or contribute to decision making as it has rich administrative experience?
In the state elections, the Shiv Sena had got 56 assembly seats, the NCP 54 and the Congress 42. Hence, it a just formula to divide the legislative council seat proportionately. It is just a matter of one or two seats. But the Congress is trying to put a spanner in the works by demanding an extra seat. Obviously this seat is going to come from Shiv Sena's proportionate share. The NCP is not going to be affected. Hence, it remains to be seen whether Sharad Pawar plays the peacemaker or lets the other two thrash it out. The Shiv Sena is unlikely to yield ground and the Congress might have to swallow its pride and make do with just 3 seats.