Mulayam, Amar meet Karat to thaw differences

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New Delhi, May 27 (UNI) The Samajwadi Party and the CPM today admitted to having differences on the Women Reservation Bill but stressed their opinions matched on all other issues.

The point was driven home by the top leadership of the two parties here when SP supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav and his lieutenant Amar Singh called on CPM leaders Prakash Karat and Sitaram Yechuri at the latter's party headquarters A K Gopalan Bhawan.

After an hour-long meeting, Mr Amar Singh told reporters ''this is true that we differ with the CPM on providing 33 per cent reservation to women in legislatures....the (Women's Reservation) Bill in its present form is not acceptable to us.'' But on all other issues,'' we have no differences with the Left parties,'' he asserted.

Mr Singh's statement came a day after Mr Yadav and the former held a similar meeting with CPI general secretary A B Bardhan at Ajoy Bhawan here.

Sources privy to the meeting said the SP leaders had planned to meet the Left leaders to apprise themselves of the reservations and objections the latter had on the Indo-US Nuclear deal.

Mr Singh, after attending the dinner party of the UPA recently had said that SP could review its position on the deal if the text of the agreement contained certain new facts. He, however, did not explain the new facts the SP was looking for.

The SP general secretary said the two parties also discussed the current political situation in the country.

Mr Yechuri endorsed Mr Singh's statement that though they had different positions on Women Reservation, their mutual relationshp was old enough to stand differences. ''We will continue to co-operate and co-ordinate with each other on other issues,'' he added.

Sources, however, maintained that the SP leadership -- by holding a meeting with the Left leadership -- sought to dismiss the impression that the two groups have developed differences.

The recent meetings between the Left and the SP may pave way for a ''troika'' comprising of the Congress, Left and the SP for mutual political benefit in the Hindi heartland ahead of the Lok Sabha elections due next year.

UNI KSA-NAB RP AS1819

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