ith the state fast heading towards fractured mandate, the former Foreign Minister Natwar Singh did not rule possibility of ruling Samajwadi Party joining hands with NDA (read BJP) to form the next government in the state. Singh, who has been vigorously campaigning for the SP, also said Muslims were divided between SP and BSP.
Talking to media in Lucknow late Tuesday night Natwar Singh said the choice of joining hands with the BJP would be difficult "but it cannot be ruled out" in the post election scenario. Singh said choice was difficult because of Yadav's secular stand, but "every thing is possible in UP politics".
Contrary to chief minister Mulayam Singh Yadav continued attack on the Election Commission, Singh was full of praise for the commission. He said "commission is doing good job". Not going into "numbers game" Singh said the fight was directly between the SP and BSP and "there is element of anti-incumbency against the SP", he commented. Singh said while Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD) would not perform well in western UP the Congress could "double" its figure from the 16 members in the present House. "Congress would matter a lot if it succeeded in winning 50 seats", he said and added "India needs a strong Congress".
About much-publicised Third Front Singh said the exercise would continue even after the election. He said all those leaders- ex CMs Chandra Babu Naidu, Jayalalitha, Om Prakash Chauthala, S Bangarappa who had assembled in Allahabad last week along with Yadav will be holding conclave in Tirupati after election to further gear up Third Front drive. "Regardless of who wins, this move would continue", Singh said and added if SP came back to power it would have immediate impact on Congress-led UPA government.
Pointing out that UPA coalition partners were keenly awaiting the UP results, Singh the UP elections was also significant for the presidential election in July. He said since the Congress was opposed to the re-election of incumbent APJ Abdul Kalam, next few months would be politically action packed. Singh said SP's role in the President's election would depend on UP results. Singh said even Kalam had also declined for second term but "if there is broad consensus he might reconsider". He said exit polls were of no consequence.