NCP leader Tariq Anwar on Wednesday dismissed suggestion of a realignment of political forces after the Lok Sabha polls and insisted that his party chief Sharad Pawar never had any political meeting with Narendra Modi.
“There will not be realignment after elections. Pawar had made it clear that meeting between the central ministers and the state chief ministers keep happening on various issues. There was never a political meeting with Modi,” he told.
“As far as I know, our party’s ideology does not allow giving or taking support from BJP,” Anwar said on the sidelines of industry body Assocham event soon after the announcement of the Lok Sabha poll schedule.
Anwar, whose party is the second largest constituent of the Congress-led UPA, said that more than corruption, communalism is the main election issue as this affects the country’s unity and peace.
“We can take steps to curb corruption,” he said.
“The biggest challenge that we face today is that there is a need to make people understand the importance of stopping communal forces. If such forces come to power, the country’s unity and peace will suffer. This is a major issue,” he said.
Anwar, Minister of State for Agriculture, disputed that there was a strong anti-incumbency factor against the UPA government.
“If we are able to convey achievements of the UPA government among people successfully, this will go in our favour rather than against us,” he said.
Holding that the main fight would be between Congress- led alliance and BJP-led NDA, he said, “In Bihar, we will fight with all strength. We know that BJP will not get support as Bihar has remained a liberal state.”
NCP will be contesting a total of 32 seats, including 22 in Maharashtra. “We do not have huge claim,” he added.
Asked about the Election Commission move to go in for a nine-phase poll for the first time, Anwar said, “After a lot of thinking, EC has taken this decision keeping in mind the challenges of weather and Naxal issues. Election can be managed better in nine phases.”