‘Secularism’ Rephrased In Maha CMP After Sena Objection

New Delhi:  Leaders of Shiv Sena and Congress had to contend with the most controversial word, secularism, as they sat down to decide on the Common Minimum Programme (CMP), sources said. After hectic parleys, the two sides came around to “avoid” the word and rephrase it, which will now be a part of the CMP’s preamble, sources said on Thursday.

During the initial discussion on the CMP on today, Shiv Sena red-flagged the word “secularism,” saying it would create problems for its cadre. Sources said a new word was phrased which Jairam Ramesh mailed to Uddhav Thackrey, the Sena supremo.

There was a discussion on the rephrased expression over the phone, and then Uddhav agreed on the sentence, which would run like this: “This government will not discriminate against any citizen of the state on the basis of caste creed and religion,” said a source.

After this was settled, all the top Congress leaders briefed party’s Interim President Sonia Gandhi, showing her a draft. Sonia Gandhi agreed on the rephrased CMP preamble, said the source.

The Draft CMP is now ready and would be on the table on Friday. Leaders of three parties, Shiv Sena, Nationalist Congress Party and Congress, would release the CMP in Mumbai.


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