Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Sunday reached out to BSP supremo Mayawati ahead of winter session of Parliament, but she remained evasive on her party's stand on plans by Trinamool Congress to bring a motion against FDI. Singh hosted a lunch for Mayawati, whose party with 21 members in the Lok Sabha, is extending outside support to the UPA government.
The meeting came days after the Prime Minister hosted a dinner for Samajwadi Party leader Mulayam Singh Yadav and his son and UP Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav. SP has 22 members in the Lok Sabha. The meetings with the two outside supporters are being seen as the UPA's effort to reach out to Yadav and Mayawati, considering that the Trinamool Congress with its 19 members in the Lok Sabha has pulled out of the UPA.
After the meeting, when Mayawati was asked about her stand on West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee's statement that her party could bring a no-confidence motion against the government on the issue of foreign direct investment, she remained evasive. "I have spoken about this in detail in our party rally in Lucknow on October 9. We will take whatever steps necessary keeping in mind what we had said in that rally," she said.
"Whenever such a situation crops up, ask us this question but why do you want our response in advance," she retorted, adding that her party members have authorised her to take a final decision on supporting the UPA. She has, however, not taken a call on the issue so far.
Mayawati had also hinted at early Lok Sabha polls and asked her party cadres to remain prepared.