Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav hosted a lunch for leaders of five political parties -- JD(U), JD(S), INLD, SJP and RJD -- at his residence.
JD(U) leaders Sharad Yadav and Nitish Kumar, RJD supremo Lalu Prasad, JD(S) leader H D Deve Gowda, INLD's Dushyant Chautala and SJP's Kamal Morarka attended the lunch.
Former Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar told the media that the parties decided to unite to raise issues of public importance and speak in a common voice in Parliament.
Thanking Mulayam for the "initiative," he said the parties, which were part of the Janata parivar, decided to work together on the principle of unity.
Responding to volley of questions on the possible 'merger' to further their electoral prospects, Kumar did not rule out such a possibility.
"The answer to this lies in the future...we can move towards one party (Hum ek party ki taraf badh sakte hain)," he said.
Though Mulayam was the host, he sent Kumar to brief the media on the lunch meeting. Mulayam's cousins Shivpal Singh and Ram Gopal and JD (U)'s K C Tyagi flanked Kumar during the briefing.
To a question why Congress, also an opposition party, was not invited, Kumar said they did not discuss Congress.
Asked why the Left was kept out of the deliberations, Kumar said political parties "who share our views on certain issues will be contacted. We are open to a dialogue."
Responding to a poser, Kumar said TMC chief Mamata Banerjee's role in the new grouping was also discussed but no decision was taken.
Incidentally, there was no representation from Ajit Singh's RLD which was once a part of the larger Janata family.