Cong downplays Raja Bhaiya`s induction in UP cabinet

Congress hoped that UPA would continue to get constructive cooperation from that party even as it downplayed the induction of Raja Bhaiya in Akhilesh Yadav`s cabinet.

New Delhi: Signalling growing warmth in its
ties with SP, Congress on Tuesday hoped the UPA would continue to
get constructive cooperation from that party even as it
downplayed the induction of controversial Raja Bhaiya in
Akhilesh Yadav`s cabinet in Uttar Pradesh.

"There is a new government in UP. Propriety demands that
it should be allowed to find its feet," Party spokesman Manish
Tewari told reporters while refusing to be drawn into the
controversy surrounding Raghuraj Pratap alias Raja Bhaiya`s
affidavit filed with the EC before Assembly election in which
he had eight declared criminal cases against him.

The party also dismissed BJP charges that the government
brought the SP and BSP on board by holding CBI as a threat and
attacked the Opposition for its "double standard" on the issue
of CBI.

Tewari said Samajwadi Party had been supporting the
government from the very beginning and hoped that the
"constructive support" given by SP and other parties will
continue even in future.

He steered clear of susggestions that the SP and BSP were
providing valuable cushion to the government at a time when
Mamata Banerjee was throwing `tantrums` on a number of issues.

"I will not lend myself to the phraseology used by
you...In a coalition arrangement every political party does
not come from same understanding of an issue. Divergence does
not essentially mean disconsonance in coalition as some try to
project," he said.

At the same time, Tewari rejected Trinamool Congress
chief Mamata Banerjee`s charge that the ruling party was
humiliating and bulldozing allies.

"We have treated all our allies with extreme sensitivity
and utmost courtesy," he said.

"We have tried to talk to them, work with them...resolve
problems to the best of our ability. We have deferred to their
wishes as far as possible. This is, has been and will be our
policy," he told reporters.

Tewari also downplayed a suggestion that SP chief Mulayam
Singh Yadav`s announcement in Lucknow yesterday that his party
was not joining the UPA government was a setback for Congress.

"We are not joining the government...Neither have we
requested the Congress to include us in the government nor has
it made such an offer so far"," Yadav had said.

Tewari said the party has been maintaining that the
government should talk to Chief Ministers on NCTC issue since
they have raised certain concerns.

He said the matter should be left to rest now as the
Prime Minister has assured he will hold consultations with the
states and nothing will be done which undermines the federal

"The suggestion of allies are taken on every important
issue. Effort is being taken to build a consensus. If
consensus does not emerge on any issues, the best possible
decision is taken in that eventuality. This is how a coalition
government is run," he said.


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