MUMBAI: Forming the next government in Maharashtra is not an option before the NCP and it will sit in the opposition as mandated by the people, party chief Sharad Pawar said on Saturday.
Pawar's remark comes even as Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray met newly-elected MLAs here on Saturday.
The Shiv Sena is pitching for equal sharing of power and has demanded a written assurance on it from the BJP.
Thackeray is learnt to have also said he has "other options open" but is not interested in exploring them since the BJP and the Sena are bound by the "Hindutva ideology".
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The BJP emerged as the single largest party winning 105 seats in the recently-concluded Assembly elections, with the Sena, NCP and Congress getting 56, 54 and 44 seats respectively in the 288-member House.
Asked about the possibility of the NCP supporting the Sena to form the government, Pawar said, "This is not the option before us. The people have asked us to sit in the opposition. We have accepted that mandate."
The NCP supremo made the remarks after Maharashtra Congress chief Balasaheb Thorat met him at his residence in Baramati in Pune district.
NCP MP Supriya Sule and the party's newly-elected MLA from Karjat-Jamkhed, Rohit Pawar, were also present on the occasion. Senior NCP leader Praful Patel expressed similar views.
"The NCP will sit in the opposition," Patel said.