New Delhi: Congress seems to be in wait and watch mode as the BJP and the Shiv Sena are yet to reach a consensus over sharing the chief minister's post in Maharashtra.
As the Shiv Sena remains firm in its demand for an equal share in power, senior Congress leaders from Maharashtra met the party high command and discussed the emerging political situation in the state.
Ashok Chavan, Prithviraj Chavan, Balasaheb Thorat, Vijay Vadettiwar, and Manikrao Thackeray met Congress interim president Sonia Gandhi.
"We met the Congress president and briefed her about the political situations in the state. We discussed in details about the result of the Maharashtra elections including our defeats with a narrow margin on many seats," former Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan told reporters here.
Earlier today, these leaders met party general secretary KC Venugopal.
According to sources, senior party leaders are divided over the possibility of forming the government with the Shiv Sena in the state, with some leaders saying that the ideologies of the two parties are entirely opposite.
Some party leaders are opposed to any association with the Shiv Sena on ideological grounds while others are in favour of extending external support to the next government if it is formed with its ally Nationalist Congress Party (NCP).
Some party leaders are of the view that if the NCP and the Shiv Sena are ready to form the government, then the Congress can extend support to it from outside instead of sharing power in the state.
"They believe that the party should not be a part of talks for power-sharing formula. NCP chief Sharad Pawar should talk to Shiv Sena and apprise Sonia Gandhi about it," added sources.
The leaders who are against having any alliance with the Shiv Sena, the sources said, believe that since Congress is a national party, it will suffer by allying with the Sena which believes in regionalism.
"Congress will suffer by compromising on issues like secularism, nationalism, Hinduism, and the National Register of Citizens. Congress and Shiv Sena's ideologies are totally different. So an alliance with the later could be dangerous," sources said.
Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut met Sharad Pawar at his residence on Thursday as a tussle with BJP over equal power-sharing refuses to die down.
Raut had earlier said that the Shiv Sena was open to explore other options if its demands are not met.
In recently concluded Assembly elections in Maharashtra, BJP won 105 seats, Shiv Sena got 56 seats whereas NCP and Congress registered the victory on 54 and 44 seats respectively.