As the prospects of an alliance between the Congress-Nationalist Congress Party and the Vanchit Bahujan Aghadi (VBA) led by Bharipa Bahujan Mahasangh president Prakash Ambedkar grow dim, Mr. Ambedkar said on Monday that the option of him contesting from Solapur is still open. Though Mr. Ambedkar has not yet announced his candidature, at a press conference in Akola on Monday he said, “VBA leader Laxman Mane has suggested that I should contest from Solapur. I will be thinking this over.” This has also led to speculation that Mr. Ambedkar may contest from Solapur as well as his traditional Akola seat.Senior Congress leader and former Union Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde has expressed his desire to contest from Solapur. The seat is currently held by Bharatiya Janata Party’s Sharad Bansode. Mr. Ambedkar’s decision is likely to hurt Mr. Shinde’s chances who, according to reports, has already begun preparations for the election. Mr. Ambedkar’s statement also indicates that he isn’t willing to hold any talks with the opposition on seat sharing. A week ago, VBA leaders had held a meeting with Congress and NCP leaders to discuss the possibility and Mr. Ambedkar had initially said that Congress should commit to bringing the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh under the ambit of Constitution. Despite an assurance that it will be fulfilled, the VBA has now raked up the issue of seat sharing by demanding 22 Lok Sabha seats in Maharashtra.Mr. Ambedkar has joined hands with Asaduddin Owaisi-led AIMIM. Sources in the NCP and Congress confirmed that any alliance with VBA is now impossible. “How can we give them 22 out of 48 seats in Maharashtra. There has to be some reasonable demand over which we can discuss,” said a senior NCP leader.