Left is UPA’s natural ally,says Lalu

Despite the Left’s clear stand to forge a non-Congress non-BJP alliance,key UPA ally RJD...

Written by Express News Service | New Delhi | Published: February 22, 2009 12:24 am

Despite the Left’s clear stand to forge a non-Congress non-BJP alliance,key UPA ally RJD on Saturday claimed that the comrades would remain with the UPA and even hoped for a pre-poll alliance.

“Left parties are our natural allies and permanent friends and they will remain with the UPA”,RJD chief and Railway Minister Lalu Prasad Yadav said when asked about the possibility of an alliance with the Left parties. Asked about a pre-poll understanding with the Left,Lalu said: “We can even contest the election together”. Lalu said the differences with the Left took place over the Indo-US nuclear deal and that was now past.

Lalu acknowledged that he had paid a surprise visit to LJP chief Ram Vilas Paswan’s house on Friday and said the UPA would remain united in Bihar. “There may be differences over some seats,but the aim is very clear. All UPA partners want to put up a united fight and defeat the NDA,” Lalu remarked.

So far both the LJP and the Congress are sticking to their stand of contesting more seats compared to last time putting the RJD chief in a tough spot. During his visit to Paswan’s place,Lalu had tried to stress the need for unity among the UPA allies in Bihar. “After the polls we will be one. So it is pointless to spoil the alliance before the polls,” Lalu was learnt to have told Paswan responding to latter’s threat of going it alone.

Indications emanating from the LJP suggest the party was willing for an alliance with the RJD,but wants to contest nothing less than 16 seats. Sources in both the parties,however,hoped that Paswan would climb down while Lalu would be willing to yield some ground. The LJP had contested 8 seats last time and RJD was willing to give it a double digit figure but not 16.

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