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Sharad Yadav denies any differences with George Fernandes

Written by: Staff

New Delhi, Apr 13 (UNI) Newly-elected President of the Janata Dal (United) Sharad Yadav today denied he had any differences with outgoing party chief George Fernandes or that there was dissension in the party.

Addressing a press conference here, Mr Yadav said Mr Fernandes would continue to play a role in the party, similar to that he was essaying in the National Democratic Alliance (NDA).

Responding to questions whether Mr Fernandes was not 'happy,' Mr Yadav said he had met him, Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar had called on him thrice and several other party leaders were meeting him.

He said his first priority as the party President would be to reorganise the party in Karnataka and Jharkhand, where he will work to bring all the old party workers, ''under the one forum of JD(U).'' ''Apart from this, we will make efforts to improve our position in Madhya Pradesh, he said, adding that they had initiated talks with Gondwana party chief Dilip Singh Bhuria.

Efforts are also on to strengthen the party in Gujarat, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh, Mr Yadav said.

Replying to another question, he termed the 'Third Front,' announced by Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav and Telegu Desam Party chief Chandrababu Naidu as as a Self-Defence Front.'' Recalling that the government had spent Rs 29 crores at the recently-concluded Commonwealth Games at Melbourne, he called on it to refrain from ''this sort of extravaganza'' in the forthcoming Commonwealth Games to be held in Delhi. ''In a country like India where hundreds of farmers are commiting suicide every year, the Government should rather create additional facilities like setting up more universities to help the people,'' he said.

Mr Yadav also criticised the central government's decision to import five lakh tonnes of wheat and that too, when the wheat procurement process was going to start.

He also assailed the government's move to modernise airports, claiming that these would be privatised.


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