Talks on with like-minded parties to fight BJP in Goa: Sharad Pawar

Mumbai: Nationalist Congress Party chief Sharad Pawar on Tuesday said talks are on with “like-minded parties” to jointly oust BJP from power in Goa in next month’s Assembly elections in the coastal state.
“NCP leader Praful Patel and Shiv Sena’s Sanjay Raut are talking with local Congress leaders there,” Pawar told reporters.
There is a common thinking that BJP should be defeated there and talks are in progress with like-minded parties, he said.
“Our desire is that parivartan (change) is needed in Goa. There is a need to oust BJP from power there,” he said.
The NCP chief said his party will contest ensuing elections in Uttar Pradesh, Manipur and Goa.
“BJP would like to contest the elections on communal lines but I am confident that the voters will not accept it,” Pawar said.
On claims of security lapse during of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Punjab visit, Pawar said, “The post of prime minister is an institution and security is the responsibility of the Centre and the state and necessary care needs to be taken.” On Uttar Pradesh minister Swami Prasad Maurya quitting the state cabinet to join Samajwadi Party, Pawar said, “Every day some new faces will ‘migrate’ in the run up to the voting.” The NCP chief said he will participate in a meeting called by Samajwadi Party leader Akhilesh Yadav.
There will be change in Uttar Pradesh, Pawar said, speaking on the fate of the Adityanath government in the north Indian state. “People need change,” he added.
Pawar slammed Yogi Adityanath over the latter’s “80:20” remarks. Adityanath has called the UP election an “80 versus 20 battle”, in a highly controversial comment seen to imply a religious divide. The numbers citied by him roughly correspond to the ratio of Hindus to Muslims in UP.
NCP will contest five seats in Manipur with Congress, he said.

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