RS seat sharing imbroglio, DMK defers DPA meet

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Chennai, Mar 5 (UNI) The ruling DMK, heading the Democratic Progressive Alliance (DPA) in Tamil Nadu, has postponed a meeting of its allies scheduled for March 7, amid reports that it was facing problem over sharing of the six Rajya Sabha seats that would fall vacant on April 2.

The announcement on postponing the meeting, came a couple of hours after AICC President Sonia Gandhi spoke to DMK President and Chief Minister M Karunanidhi over phone last evening and discussed about her party contesting the polls, which would be held, if necessary, on March 26.

Nominations for the polls would open on March 8.

A DMK release issued late last night said the scheduled March 7 meeting of the leaders of the alliance parties of the DPA had been deferred. But it did not specify any reason.

''The fresh dates for the meeting will be announced later,'' the release said.

Meanwhile, reports suggested that all is not well within the DPA as the key alliance partners like the Congress, PMK and the Left parties were staking their claim for seats. In fact the Congress had been demanding two of the six seats, according to sources.

PMK sources said the party was not satisfied with the DMK as it had rejected its plea for allotting one seat, despite the PMK's numerical strength in the State Assembly being higher than that of the CPI and the CPI(M), which were also clamouring for a seat.

The Rajya Sabha elections would be held to fill up the six vacancies from the State Assembly as the tenure of Union Minister G K Vasan (Congress), R Shanmugasundaram (DMK), advocate N Jothi, Thanga Tamilselvan, Syed Khan, Perumal (AIADMK) ends next month.

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