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SP for secular alternative at Centre: Amar Singh

Over the possibility of aligning with BJP, the SP has said that it will strive to provide a secular Govt at Centre.
PTI | By Press Trust of India, Lucknow
UPDATED ON APR 27, 2004 09:23 PM IST

In the midst of talk over the possibility of it aligning with BJP in the post-poll scenario, Samajwadi Party on Tuesday said it will strive to provide a secular alternative at the Centre after the elections.

"Our party is committed to work towards providing a secular alternative at the Centre and is in regular touch with the CPI (M) General Secretary Harikishen Singh Surjeet," SP General Secretary Amar Singh said.

On Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee's statement of BJP having ideological similarities with the SP, Singh said if it was so the Prime Minister was welcome to join the SP, but only after apologising for the Gujarat riots.

"If Vajpayee did not find any ideological differences with the SP, he can join our party after explaining to the country the Best Bakery matter, the Gujarat massacre and other contentious issues and seek an apology from the country," Singh said.

Singh said Vajpayee's and other BJP leaders' remarks on similarities between BJP and SP were aimed at confusing and dividing the Muslim vote bank of the party.

"The BJP is an expert in spreading rumours and the statements are a conspiracy against the SP," Singh said.

On Congress' appeal to SP on withdrawing candidates in Madhya Pradesh to avoid a division in secular vote, Singh said his party was consider doing so provided Congress withdrew its candidates in Uttar Pradesh.

"The condition of SP in Madhya Pradesh is the same as that of the Congress in Uttar Pradesh and if the latter can do the same here we will oblige them in Madhya Pradesh," he said.

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