'UDF not toeing BJP's policies'

Updated on May 04, 2004 02:07 PM IST

Categorically denying reports that UDF had BJP-like policies in the state, Congress leader Margaret Alva added the contest in Kerala would be between UDF and LDF.

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HT Image
PTI | ByPress Trust of India, Kochi, Kerala

Senior Congress leader Margaret Alva AICC observer for Kerala and addressing a meet-the-press programme in Kochi disagreed with CPI-M politburo member Prakash Karat's remarks that the UDF was toeing the BJP policies in the state.

She said that while the BJP government had been pursuing a policy of disinvesting profit making PSUs, the Congress, along with the Marxists, had opposed it tooth and nail.

The Congress had also taken a "very firm" stand against sending troops to Iraq, she said.

Alva, who has been camping in Kochi for the past three days, said the BJP would not get even a single seat in Kerala, where the main battle was between the Congress-led UDF and CPI(M)-led LDF.

On Chief Minister AK Antony's statement that the CPI(M) was an "outdated" party, she said "different people have different opinions. These are election speeches".

The Congress campaigning in Kerala would gather momentum after party President, Sonia Gandhi's visit on May 5, she added.

Ruling out the possibility of a third front in the post-poll scenario, she said secular parties would come together to rid India of the BJP-led NDA "communal combine", which has "destroyed" the secular fabric of the country.

"There is no possibility of a third front. Ultimately, like-minded secular parties will come together with the Congress-led front to defeat the BJP-led NDA," said Alva.

Asked if the Congress was still wooing the Samajwadi Party and Bahujan Samaj Party in Uttar Pradesh, she said the BSP was fighting the elections on its own. UP Chief Minister and SP President, Mulayam Singh Yadav, would go with the secular combine.

To another query, she said the leadership of the Congress-led coalition would be decided after the election.

Claiming that the BJP-led NDA was losing ground, Alva expressed confidence that the Congress would increase its tally in this election and emerge as the single largest party.

The NDA allies are fast deserting the BJP, she said, adding that if the Prime Minister has to throw a "sari party" to win votes, it only showed the desperation of the BJP who are now "shamelessly trying to win over minority votes," she said.

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