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Mulayam, Chandrababu Naidu form "anti-Congress, anti-BJP" front

Friday 7 April 2006

NEW DELHI: Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister and Samajwadi Party president Mulayam Singh Yadav and Telugu Desam Party chief Chandrababu Naidu on Thursday announced the formation of an "anti-Congress, anti-BJP" front.

Addressing a joint press conference here, they said their parties would work together with the AIADMK, the Asom Gana Parishad and the National Conference. "We are working towards a long-term understanding," Mr. Naidu said, adding people had lost faith in national parties.

Asked when the front would be finalised, Mr. Yadav said, "Wait till the Assembly elections in the five States are over." He said both the parties were jointly campaigning for the AGP in Assam. Asked about the Left parties’ role in the proposed front, Mr. Yadav said they had always been supportive of any anti-Congress, anti-BJP front.

Attack Sonia

Criticising the United Progressive Alliance and the National Democratic Alliance, the two leaders singled out the Congress and its president Sonia Gandhi for attack. They described as "drama" Ms. Gandhi’s resignation from the Lok Sabha on the "office of profit" issue. "She targeted the Samajwadi Party and became a target herself as she was bound to be disqualified," Mr. Yadav said.

Both the leaders alleged political victimisation of their supporters by the Congress-led UPA. They said the economic reforms had not touched the poor, farmers were committing suicide, unemployment was unaddressed and prices of essential commodities were high.

On questions regarding his party’s support to the NDA, Mr. Naidu said the TDP had never compromised on secularism. However, in politics there were always developments that were incumbent on circumstances. "The Congress brought down the United Front Government accusing the DMK of being responsible for Rajiv Gandhi’s murder. Now the Congress and the DMK are close," he said.

Asked why his party was extending support to the Congress-led UPA Government at the Centre, Mr. Yadav said the support was issue-based and in the same manner as the Congress was extending support to his government in U.P. The support was meant to weaken communal forces, but the opposite was happening, he said.

Asked to comment on the former BJP president, L. K. Advani’s rath yatra, he said such yatras were taken out every day and did not deserve comment.

See online : The Hindu

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