Congress Faces Tensions Over Seat-Sharing in Mumbai MVA Alliance

Mumbai, 12th April 2024: The issue within the Maharashtra and Mumbai units of the Congress party is centred around seat-sharing arrangements in the Mumbai region as part of the Opposition Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) alliance. The row is centred around the fact that out of the six seats in Mumbai, the Congress party will only contest two seats (Mumbai North Central and Mumbai North), leaving other seats to its allies in the MVA, notably Shiv Sena UBT.

The Mumbai Congress unit, represented by its chief Varsha Gaikwad, feels that the state Congress leadership, particularly state chief Nana Patole, has not been assertive enough in negotiations, thus compromising the party’s interests in Mumbai. Gaikwad stated that the party expected to contest three out of six seats and conveyed this demand to the party leaders involved in negotiations.

A delegation from the Mumbai Congress plans to approach the party’s high command in Delhi to request a potential exchange of seats with its ally Sena UBT. Gaikwad herself was interested in contesting from the Mumbai South Central seat, which has been allocated to Sena UBT. However, she accepted the decision but is open to an exchange if it occurs.

Despite the internal dispute, there appears to be a willingness to resolve the matter within the alliance. Sena UBT leader Sanjay Raut emphasized that every candidate in the election is representing the MVA, indicating that there is still a collaborative approach within the alliance. Raut expressed confidence that the issue would be addressed through discussions within the alliance.