As part of the UPA's continuing efforts to reach out to outside supporters ahead of the winter session of Parliament, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh hosted a lunch for Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) chief Mayawati on Sunday.
With Mamata Banerjee's Trinamool Congress threatening to move a resolution against the government's decision to allow foreign direct investment (FDI) in multi-brand retail in the session beginning November 22, outside supporters are crucial for the ruling coalition.
On Friday, the PM had hosted a dinner for BSP's political rivals - Samajwadi Party leader Mulayam Singh Yadav and his son, Uttar Pradesh chief minister Akhilesh Yadav.
Downplaying Sunday's meeting, Mayawati said, "Lunches, dinners and meetings are held routinely in politics.
These should not be linked to the Parliament session."
She added that her stand on FDI will be in line with what she had said at a party rally in Lucknow on October 9.