NATIONAL

Jethmalani meets Sonia

NEW DELHI, FEB. 26. The independent Rajya Sabha member, Ram Jethmalani, today met the Congress president, Sonia Gandhi, and extended his support to the anti-Bharatiya Janata Party forces in the coming general elections.

Mr. Jethmalani, once a bitter Congress critic, spent more than 20 minutes at Ms. Gandhi's residence, discussing the political situation. Confirming the meeting, the Congress spokesperson S. Jaipal Reddy said that Mr. Jethmalani was offended by the "maladministration of the National Democratic Alliance Government" and expressed his willingness to join hands with secular forces.

Asked about the reversal of Mr. Jethmalani's stand with regard to the Congress, Mr. Reddy said: "Politics is never frozen. Today the priority in politics is defeat of the communal forces. However, if there is any contradiction in his position taken in the past, it is for him to explain."