After Naidu, Karat calls on Mayawati

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New Delhi, Aug 24 (UNI) CPI(M) General Secretary Prakash Karat today had an hour-long meeting with BSP supremo and Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati as part of his effort to put in place a viable third front.

BSP sources said the two leaders discussed the current political situation and an agenda for their future dialogues in this connection.

Ms Mayawati's recent announcements that her party would contest all 80 Lok Sabha seats in Uttar Pradesh had come as a great setback to the efforts to evolve a front of non-Congress and non-BJP party to provide an alternative to these two parties in the coming election.

Mr Naidu and the Left leaders had tried to prop up Ms Mayawati as the leader of the alliance after its founder member Samajwadi Party had deserted it to side with the Congress on the Indo-US nuclear deal.

The BSP chief's refusal to concede any UP seat to other members of the evolving Third Front, of which the Left Parties were an important part, had dissapointed all the leaders in the grouping.

This week, the Left leaders and UNPA important constituent TDP's Chandrababu Naidu resumed their efforts to persuade Ms Mayawati to ammend her stand in the interest of a third alternative.

It was in this connection that yesterday Mr Naidu met Mr Karat and later Ms Mayawati. After his meeting with the BSP chief, Mr Naidu said the discussion was fruitful, ''things were moving in the right direction.'' UNI NAZ LPB RAI2252

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