Chidambaram, who accompanied Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to the recently held BRICS Summit in Durban in South Africa, said the son of Mulayam Singh Yadav understood his state well.
He said, while inaugurating 300 bank branches in Lucknow that the government of India would assist the Uttar Pradesh government in implementing developing projects. The minister said he would invite Akhilesh Yadav to New Delhi when the Centre acts on the development projects.
The Congress's latest overture came after SP chief Mulayam Singh recently upped the ante against the former and termed it as "cheat and clever". His hint at withdrawing the outside support to the UPA government gained momentum after the DMK's pull-out put the government in trouble. The SP chief, who praised senior BJP leader L K Advani recently, has been hinting at snap polls and his party has already declared names of the election candidates.
Prime Minister Singh had said on Thursday while returning from Durban that there was a perception that the SP could also pull out but reiterated that the UPA government would complete its full tenure. Chidambaram's visit to UP soon after the return from Durban suggests that the government is making last-ditch effort to regain the SP's faith so that it can sail through the final year.
Chidambaram even said during his visit to UP that the state is an important state and its development is related to the nation's progress. He said this while replying to a query that the Centre often discriminates against non-Congress states like Bihar and West Bengal. The finance minister hoped that the new bank branches inaugurated on Thursday would strengthen the banking network in the state and make loans to farmers and students more easily available.
The Congress-SP relation like that between an old couple. They argue, threaten to divorce each other but never really get separated. These two parties have a fixed set-up made up of common enemies around them some temporary flirtation is never really going to disturb that. But what is amazing that the SP, like any an ambitious wife, blackmails her husband (the Congress) to milk the latter the most to keep herself happy.
The SP is gladly pulling out more benefits from the UPA even in the last moments to show the people of the state that how committed is its government for the betterment of UP and thus negate the anti-incumbency factor before the next Lok Sabha polls.
Last year, the SP had extracted monetary aid for UP after Mulayam Singh Yadav ditched another anti-Congress politician Mamata Banerjee throw the weight behind the Congress at the last moment on the question of supporting the UPA's presidential candidate. The man continues to dazzle with the clientele politics while the bigger party pampers his opportunist politics.
Can Banerjee take a leaf out of his book for her state's interest? Her temperament is okay, but she lacks Netaji's tactics.