Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister and Samajawadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav on Sunday said that JD(U) leader and NDA convenor George Fernandes was welcome to join his party and that Fernandes had discussed the issue with him.
Yadav told reporters at the airport on his way to Davanagere to address a SP state-level convention that it would be a "great achievement" for his party if Fernandes joins it as he was a "true Samajwadi personality".
Yadav said SP would grow in strength in Karnataka, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh and other northern states if Fernandes joined them.
Fernandes had said on Saturday that he did not care if his ties with BJP and party colleagues Sharad Yadav and Nitish Kumar broke over his invitation to Yadav to a gathering of socialists in New Delhi next month.
To a query if he would join SP, he had also said in a TV interview that "I have other options", and re-launching of Samata Party could also be thought of.
Fernandes had also agreed it was right to say that he wanted to keep his distinct identity but would like to be as close to Mulayam as possible and it would be done by re-launching Samata Party.