In a new twist to the formation of alliance in the run up to the Lok Sabha elections, senior Congress leader and Union Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad spoke to All India N.R. Congress (AINRC) president and Chief Minister N. Rangasamy over phone recently and held discussion on elections.
The telephonic call was made on the day when a 3-member team of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) held discussion with Mr. Rangasamy for forging an electoral alliance with AINRC a few days ago. While confirming the phone call made by Mr. Azad, Mr. Rangasamy told The Hindu on Monday that the discussion was centred on “some developments”.
Reliable sources said that Mr. Azad had asked him not to take any decision on forming new alliance or fielding candidate as the Congress party was ready to listen to the Mr. Rangaswamy’s “grievances” on various issues, including his asking for financial assistance to the Union Territory of Puducherry.
Mr. Azad had also invited him to make a visit to New Delhi to solve all “outstanding issues”.
On his part, it was learnt that Mr. Rangasamy told the Union Minister that he couldn’t take any important decision as he was heading a party and that he would have to consult his party.
The conversation assumed significance in the background of concerted efforts of the BJP to bring ruling AINRC into the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) fold. The Puducherry unit of BJP has already indicated that it doesn’t have much reservation on the AINRC fielding its own candidate in the lone Puducherry constituency under the banner of NDA.
However, Mr. Rangasamy is yet to make his stand clear on the elections.
Meanwhile, the AINRC has convened its general body and executive committee meet on 2 February (Sunday) to discuss the Parliament elections.
V. Bhalan, general secretary, said that it would discuss all issues and offers from various parties on forming alliance.
It would also take decision on forming booth level committees.