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No commitment to anything yet: SP

SP leaders Mulayam Singh Yadav and Amar Singh say the priority is national interests and not securing berths in the Cabinet.
IANS | By HT Correspondent, New Delhi
UPDATED ON JUL 04, 2008 01:56 PM IST

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh Friday presented "new facts" on the India-US civil nuclear deal to Samajwadi Party leaders when they met him at his residence in New Delhi, said party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav.
"All new facts were presented to us by the PM," Mulayam Singh told reporters before leaving to meet Congress president Sonia Gandhi.

"The country's interest is more important to us ... than politics," he said as the two groups discuss the contentious deal and the modalities of supporting the Congress-led government if the Left withdraws its support.

"We will talk to the UNPA (United National Progressive Alliance) leaders. We will brief them about our talks with the prime minister and Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam," the Samajwadi Party leader said, referring to the party's discussions on the deal with India's former scientist president.

"For us politics is not priority. Our priority is country. Apart from this, one of our top priorities is to keep communal forces out of power."

As his party and the Congress inched closer to a settlement, Samajwadi Party general secretary Amar Singh added that no decision had been taken yet.

"We have not committed anything so far. We briefed the prime minister about the talks we had with Abdul Kalam. We are going to meet Sonia Gandhi. We will be briefing her also on the same topic," Amar Singh said after the half-an-hour meeting with the prime minister.

He also vehemently denied reports that they were striking a deal for cabinet berths.

"We are not blackmailing or striking a deal with the government. We are not here to make deals for any cabinet berth. We are only doing it for national interest. Our fight is against price rise and inflation. And it will continue. It is not against any individual," he said.

He said the UNPA, the regional alliance of which his party is a part, was "still intact".

"We have the support of all our members," he claimed.

Congress leaders, including Defence Minister AK Antony and Ahmed Patel, met Gandhi on Friday morning to discuss the political situation and chalk out a strategy to save the UPA government if it loses the legislative backing of the four Left parties.

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