Congress pleased with Akhilesh Yadav
New Delhi: Akhilesh
Yadav’s “excellent meeting” with Manmohan Singh yesterday has buoyed
the Congress although the party believes that a formal alliance with the
Samajwadi Party is not feasible, sources said.
The Uttar Pradesh
chief minister apparently made it clear to the Prime Minister that his
party did not want confrontations with the Centre. He assured Singh of
support in Parliament on key bills while demanding help in bringing rapid
development to his state, the sources said. Akhilesh’s decision to
promptly restore the name of Amethi, changed to Sahuji Maharaj Nagar by
his predecessor Mayawati, too has gone down well with the Congress.
has been very responsive and friendly so far. His priority is to deliver
good governance in Uttar Pradesh. He knows that a Congress-led Centre
would suit him better than a BJP-led government,” a senior Congress
leader said. On its part, the Congress is considering offering the post of
Rajya Sabha deputy chairperson to the Samajwadis.
will either try to keep the post vacant till the President and
Vice-President are elected or offer it to the Samajwadis to prevent the
Opposition from teaming up to win the post in an election.
deputy chairman K. Rehman Khan’s tenure has ended. The election for the
post has to be held during the second half of the budget session but the
Congress may delay the process. There have been instances of the post
remaining vacant for two or three sessions. If the Congress hands the post
to the Samajwadis, it will have forged an indirect institutional link with
the party — a crucial advantage in the Rajya Sabha — without having to
induct it into the government.
Although the electoral rout in
Uttar Pradesh has shaken the Congress, most of its senior leaders are
still opposed to aligning with the Samajwadis. They are convinced that
Rahul Gandhi’s go-alone policy alone can revive the party. “The
message from the Uttar Pradesh and Bihar elections is that the voters do
not want instability,” a Congress general secretary said.
they realised that a fractured mandate would create problems for their
states, they voted for one party. We may benefit from such a sentiment in
the Lok Sabha elections.” The 2009 election results, when the Congress
crossed 200 seats after a long time despite high prices, continue to
embolden many in the party. They believe that the separation from the Left
had prompted the voters to give a larger mandate to the Congress.
of these leaders advocate fighting the next Lok Sabha elections alone,
without seat adjustments with the DMK, Nationalist Congress Party,
Trinamul Congress or the National Conference. They say the option of a
coalition should be explored only after the elections. Following the same
logic, this lobby opposes any regional alliances with the Samajwadis or
the Rashtriya Janata Dal.
-The Telegraph, Calcutta
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