Rahul Gandhi to meet Amar Singh Tuesday

July 13th, 2008 - 3:14 pm ICT by IANS  

A file-photo of Sonia Gandhi

New Delhi, July 13 (IANS) Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi will meet Samajwadi Party general secretary Amar Singh Tuesday in what would be their first meeting after the party pledged support to the ruling combine in the current political crisis, informed sources said. The meet follows a telephone conversation the two had last week to discuss the emerging political situation and its repercussions on Uttar Pradesh.

The two leaders would discuss more of Uttar Pradesh than national affairs at the meeting, the sources, speaking on condition of strict anonymity, told IANS.

The two had made contacts after the death of Amar Singh’s father earlier this year when Rahul Gandhi wrote to Amar Singh. This was followed up Amar Singh ringing up Rahul Gandhi to thank him for his gesture.

This was the culmination of a series of indirect, and then direct, contacts at various levels between the two parties following the Samajwadi Party’s defeat in the assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh in May last year.

There was even a suggestion from the Congress at one time last year to induct the Samajwadi Party into the government, but that was not acceptable to the Samajwadi Party as the proposal then was to keep out Amar Singh because of his known antipathy to party president Sonia Gandhi.

Since then the two sides have considerably moderated their positions resulting in the dramatic support of the Samajwadi Party for the nuclear deal this month and their commitment to back the government in a parliament trust vote.

Samajwadi Party stalwarts are presently on an overdrive to ensure that every MP is on board and votes in favour of the trust motion in the Lok Sabha July 22. Everyone now realises that it could be a touch and go affair and every number counts.

The party is trying to contact each and every MP to ensure he is on board with the party’s thinking and policies even as its rival Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) is sparing no effort to wean away fence-sitting MPs.

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