Debating India

TDP to break bread with UPA allies

Monday 13 February 2006, by PRASAD*K.V.

An attempt to move away from NDA

NEW DELHI: The Telugu Desam Party will join ranks with those extending outside support to the United Progressive Alliance - if only at the dinner meeting being hosted by Lok Sabha Speaker Somnath Chatterjee this week.

The TDP representative would join the leaders of the four Left parties, the Samajwadi Party, and the Bahujan Samajwadi Party at the pre-Budget session exercise of Mr. Chatterjee, sources in the Lok Sabha secretariat said.

The TDP’s move is seen as an attempt to send a message that it had moved away from the Bharatiya Janata Party-led National Democratic Alliance. It comes in the wake of the attempt by its leader, N. Chandrababu Naidu, to build bridges with the constituents of the erstwhile United Front.

During his visit to Delhi and Lucknow last week, Mr. Naidu held a series of meetings with leaders of the National Conference, the Indian National Lok Dal, and the Janata Dal (United). There were reports that efforts were on to fix a meeting with CPI(M) general secretary Prakash Karat. It could not materialise since Mr. Karat was not in Delhi.

Although he has dismissed talk of the revival of a third front, Mr. Naidu has been trying to find a space among the non-Congress, non-BJP parties. While in Lucknow, Mr. Naidu met Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mulayam Singh Yadav, who has spoken about the need for a political alternative in the country.

See online : The Hindu

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