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INDIA bloc seat sharing: Mamata Banerjee keen to test Bengal waters ‘alone’, UBT Sena not willing to ‘compromise’ | India News – Times of India


MUMBAI: The buzz over the seat-sharing formula of the opposition’s INDIA bloc hit a crescendo on Friday after a few partners within the alliance hinted at going all ‘alone’ in next year’s Lok Sabha elections or not willing to ‘compromise’ in their respective states.
Shiv Sena (UBT) MP Sanjay Raut has asserted that their party is the biggest in Maharashtra, hinting at no compromise over seat-sharing talks.
“This is Maharashtra, and Shiv Sena is the biggest party here. Congress is a national party. Uddhav Thackeray is having positive discussions with the decision-making leaders of Congress including Rahul Gandhi, Sonia Gandhi, Mallikarjun Kharge, and KC Venugopal. We have always said that Shiv Sena has always been fighting on 23 seats in the Lok Sabha elections including Dadra and Nagar Haveli and that will be firm,” Raut had said.
Prior to Shiv Sena (UBT), Mamata Banerjee on Thursday expressed her desire to test Bengal waters alone in the next year’s Lok Sabha elections.
“INDIA alliance will be there across the country. In Bengal, the TMC will fight and defeat the BJP. Remember, in Bengal, only TMC can teach a lesson to the BJP and not any other party,” Mamata said while she was speaking at a gathering in North 24 Parganas.
However, the Trinamool Congress supremo said that INDIA alliance will contest on all seats across the country.
Meanwhile, Congress has said that talks on the agreement with all the parties will be held with an ‘open mind’.
Speaking to on Monday, Jairam Ramesh, the Congress general secretary in charge of communications, said, “Khule mann aur band muh se hi hum seat sharing pe baat aage chalaenge (We will carry forward seat-sharing talks with an open mind and refraining from public statements).”
The Congress leader added that different states would pose different challenges with regard to advancing seat-sharing talks and the discussions, hence, be held, taking all aspects into consideration.
“The seat-sharing talks are ongoing and will continue. We will do what needs to be done. There are different conditions and challenges in different states. We will be having discussions on seat sharing, keeping in mind the different (political) realities there,” Ramesh said.
While the INDIA partners came together for their fourth meeting in the national capital recently, the potentially thorny issue of seat-sharing was left unaddressed.
The opposition parties have forged forces to put up a united front against the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party in the 2024 Lok Sabha polls under the Indian National Developmental Inclusive Alliance umbrella.


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