The Samajwadi Party (SP) flip flop on its relations with the Congress continued on Tuesday, with party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav presenting a three-page note to PM Manmohan Singh listing its grievances. Though Yadav asserted the issue of withdrawal of support to the UPA government was not an option.
“I am satisfied with the meeting,” said Yadav after his late evening meeting with PM Manmohan Singh.
The SP working committee has decided to meet on January 17 to discuss the future of the alliance.
Earlier in the day, the SP chief trained his guns against senior Congress leader Digvijay Singh. He accused him of attempting to break the alliance between the two parties, while charging him of links with industrialist Mukesh Ambani.
“During the seat sharing negotiations, Singh had sought the Unnao parliamentary seat for the wife of a senior employee of a
firm owned by the senior Ambani, Yadav…Singh's son is also employed in Mukesh Ambani's company,” said Yadav.
Quoting senior Congress leaders, news reports have suggested that the SP has been attempting to mount pressure on the Congress with the intention to have its way in the Disproportionate Assets (DA) case pending against the SP chief. The CBI is scheduled to submit its report to the Supreme Court later this month.
The reports also suggested that the SP had raised the “spectrum issue” with aims of benefiting the business interests of Anil Ambani and that the party had demanded the allotment of a bigger bungalow for the party’s parliamentary party leader Ram Gopal Yadav, besides allotment of land for the construction of the party office. The SP has also been pushing the case for gas allocation for the Dadri power project, the reports said.
Rubbishing the reports, Yadav said he had spent a total of 38 months in jail during previous Congress regimes, “but his spirits had not buckled”. In respect of the pending DA case, he said that the Congress leaders would be taken by surprise when he would present evidence of his innocence and impartiality.
In the meantime, the Congress was confident that the seat sharing talks with the SP would be resolved. “Some kind of settlement will be arrived at,” claimed spokesman Manish Tewari.