MUMBAI: Reiterating that the mandate for his party was to sit in the opposition, NCP chief Sharad Pawar said on Wednesday that the BJP-Shiv Sena combine should take the lead and form the government as early as possible to avoid a constitutional crisis in the state.
Sena MP Sanjay Raut, who had met Pawar last week, visited the NCP chief again at his residence on Wednesday. Asked about Raut’s claim that the Sena had the support of 170 legislators, Pawar said he was not aware how Raut had got the figure of 170. “Raut has been meeting me quite regularly, but so far there has been no proposal from him on government formation, particularly a Shiv Sena-led government.”
While Pawar, responding to theories about the NCPCongress supporting a Senaled government, said the decision would have to be a “collective” one as NCP and Congress had jointly contested the assembly elections.
Pawar said, “Sena and BJP had contested the elections jointly. The saffron combine should form the government as the mandate is in their favour. We were unable to secure a clear majority, and we have been given the mandate to sit in the opposition. We will play the role of a constructive opposition.”
Asked if the NCP would form the government with support of non-BJP parties, Pawar said that as of now, there was no possibility as NCP did not have the required numbers.

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