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Sonia to talk to Lalu, Paswan

Onkar Singh in New Delhi | February 27, 2005 19:39 IST
Last Updated: February 27, 2005 23:45 IST

Congress president and United Progressive Alliance chairperson Sonia Gandhi will hold discussions with Rashtriya Janata Dal president Lalu Prasad Yadav and Lok Janshakti Party chairman Ram Vilas Paswan in an effort to have a 'secular' government installed in Bihar.

Congress general secretary Ambika Soni told media persons after a meeting of senior party leaders on Sunday that Sonia will also try to resolve the differences between Paswan and Yadav.

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"We met to discuss the [election] results in the three states of Haryana, Bihar and Jharkhan," Soni said.

The meeting was attended, amongst others, by Arjun Singh, Ahmed Patel, M L Fotehdar and Janardhan Dewedi.

Soni said in Haryana the party would nominate observers either on Sunday night or on Monday. "They will talk to party MLAs and report to the Congress president on the issue of the next chief minister of Haryana," she said.

Ahmed Patel, party in charge of Bihar, spoke to Ramvilas Paswan over the formation of the government in Bihar. "We are also in touch with Lalu [Prasad] Yadav," Soni said.

She disputed the National Democratic Alliance claim that since it had emerged as the largest single pre-poll alliance it should be allowed to form the government in Bihar. "Have they got the mandate? Where is the anti-Lalu mandate when the RJD, the Congress and the LJP together have many more seats then the NDA?" she asked.

She said the Congress was in touch with independents and others to form a 'secular' government in the state.

She admitted that the party was disappointed with its performance in Jharkhand. "Even here [Jharkhand] the Congress, the JMM and the RJD have 33 MLAs and we are talking to independents and others," Soni.

She did not comment when asked if the party favoured imposition of the President's rule in case Paswan refused to support the RJD.

Complete Coverage: Assembly Elections 2005

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Number of User Comments: 2

Sub: Bihar Elections & formation of Govt

Mrs.Sonia , only can intiate and with her ability to lead the UPA in her capacity as the chairperson of UPA can in my opinion ...

Posted by j.rajagopal

Sub: Laloo ne sabko lalloo banaya with help of Paswan.

This was predicted by BJP leader Pramod Mahajan. Though Mr. Paswan says he will not be with Laloo for saat janam, this is a trick ...

Posted by ashok chavda


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