Praful Patel meets Pawar to iron out seat sharing differences

Reports have said differences have been narrowed down to a few constituencies in Pune and Mumbai and the non-completion of the exercise was delaying a formal announcement of the alliance, which is expected by Tuesday.

While there has been no official word, Congress is likely to contest 174 and NCP 114 seats in the 288-member Assembly.

The Congress Central Election Committee which is headed by party chief Sonia Gandhi and has Prime Minister Manmohan Singh as a member, is believed to have cleared 140 to 150 candidates so far including Chief Minister Ashok Chavan and several of his cabinet colleagues.

A meeting of the Congress Screening Committee for Maharashtra was also held on Monday apparently to scrutinise the candidates for the remaining seats.

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