Efforts on to save DMK-Cong alliance

Efforts are afoot to save the Congress-DMK alliance, despite the unilteral announcement by the ally to pull out of UPA over differences in seat sharing in poll-bound Tamilnadu.

Updated: Mar 05, 2011, 22:39 PM IST

New Delhi: Efforts are afoot to save the
Congress-DMK alliance, despite the unilteral announcement by
the ally to pull out of UPA over differences in seat sharing
in poll-bound Tamilnadu.

Sources in the party say that senior party leaders
like Pranab Mukherjee could be talking to Chief Minister M
Karunanidhi to clear the air.

There was no indication till tonight whether the party
was sending any leader to Tamil Nadu to salvage the situation.

That all was not lost was also evident when senior
DMK leader T R Baalu indicated his party could review its
decision to pull its ministers out of the Union Cabinet if the Congress relents on its stand over seat sharing.
Asked whether it was the end of the road for the
seven-year-old DMK-Congress alliance, Baalu replied in the
negative.

"We are all friends. We do not see the end of the
road. Though we have withdrawn ministers our friendship will
continue forever...Definitely we will have a discussion if
they (Congress) reconsider. If Congress agrees for 60 seats we
will reconsider our decision (to pull out of Cabinet)," Baalu
told reporters.
Congress, too, has reacted with caution on the
development with party spokesperson Abhishek Singhvi
indicating that hopes of a settlement on seat sharing even at
this stage are very much alive.

"There is no need to comment on it now. This (has
happened) in the middle of negotiations and unnecessary press
comments will muddy the waters," was the refrain of Singhvi.

A senior AICC functionary, who did not wish to be
identified, said, "We are not going to react until the DMK
officially communicates to us the decision."

DMK is the first ally of the Congress led UPA to
pull out of the ruling coalition at the Centre.

With 18 MPs in the Lok Sabha, it is the third largest
constituent of the UPA after Congress and the Trinamool
Congress.

It has been with the UPA since 2004 after Congress and
DMK buried the hatchet before the Lok Sabha elections.

UPA ally NCP has also appealed to DMK to continue
its support to the alliance as it has been doing for the past
seven years.

PTI