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HindustanTimes Mon,20 Oct 2014

All options open for UPA

Saubhadra Chatterji, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, March 26, 2013
First Published: 00:31 IST(26/3/2013) | Last Updated: 12:42 IST(26/3/2013)

With outside supporters such as the Samajwadi Party starting political brinkmanship to take advantage of the UPA's weakness after the DMK's exit, the government's crisis managers are weighing multi-pronged strategies to keep the coalition going.

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At least five meetings of the Congress brass have taken place ever since the DMK decided to pull out of the UPA to assess the political situation.

Top party sources claimed that there was no fear of the government collapsing mid-way in these talks.

While the party has already reached out to big regional parties such as the Trinamool Congress and the JD(U), the Congress managers are also banking on the assessment that many parties - the Left, BSP and even DMK - would not like to face early elections.

"DMK may have gone out over the Sri Lankan Tamil issue. But if there is an election now when J Jayalalitha is firmly in command in the state, can the DMK gain politically?" said a senior Congress leader.

The Left parties-with 24 MPs in Lok Sabha-also prefer to face late polls as it is yet to regain any lost ground in West Bengal.

"Several parties may be opposed to the UPA but would the Trinamool vote along with that of Left or BSP and SP come together to topple this government?" said Bhartruhari Mahtab, BJD Chief Whip in Lok Sabha.

West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee will meet Planning Commission brass on April 8 to finalise the annual plan for Bengal.

Sources point out that her state is likely to get additional sops to overcome the shortage of funds. The annual plan for Bihar can also get a boost as the Congress eyes Nitish Kumar as a potential partner.


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