Mumbai, Feb 3 IANS | 11 months ago

Terming itself a "die hard" secular party, the NCP Monday dismissed reports that it was planning to join hands with the BJP in the ensuing Lok Sabha elections.

"We are die hard secularists... we believe in secular principles and will go with secular parties," said Jitendra Awhad, the working president of the party's Maharashtra unit.

Awhad categorically asserted that the Nationalist Congress Party would take a stand against communal forces and "would not compromise with BJP under any circumstances".

"We shall not support communal forces in any manner and will not take any steps favouring people who believe in a fascist ideology," he said, adding party chief Sharad Pawar had often repeated the party's stand against communalism.

Earlier in the day, the NCP state unit held a marathon meeting at the residence of Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar to discuss the candidates for the 2014 Lok Sabha elections.

"We have finalized our list of candidates but the announcement shall be made only after holding consultations with the Congress," Awhad said.

Denying any "ultimatum" to the Congress over seat-sharing, Awhad said the NCP is "patient" and will wait till the talks with its alliance partner at the centre and Maharashtra are held.

"We have not given any ultimatum nor are we keeping anybody guessing on the elections and candidates. We shall announce the names within 24 hours after talks with Congress," he said.

(Posted on 04-02-2014)

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