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Congress, allies to meet tonight

By Vicky Nanjappa & Syed Firdaus Ashraf in New Delhi
May 16, 2009 15:00 IST
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A crucial meeting of the Congress with its allies is scheduled to be held later on Saturday night, Congress general secretary Janardhan Dwivedi told at the party's Akbar Road office in New Delhi.

He said at present most of the Congress's allies were in their respective constituencies and the party was waiting for them to return to New Delhi following which the meeting will be held.

Dwivedi made it clear that they were open to support any party which is non-communal. "I would brand only the Bharatiya Janata Party and the Shiv Sena as communal parties," he added. 

When questioned whether the party was open to support from the Samajwadi Party's Mulayam Singh Yadav, he said they were. "He is with us," the Congress general secretary added.

He also said there was absolutely no problem for the Congress to get the additional numbers needed for government formation and added that it was just a matter of time  before the government is formed. "All we are waiting is for an invitation from the President and once that happens, we will prove our strength," Dwivedi added.

On the party's win, he said the most important factor one must take note of is that there was no anti-incumbency factor against the Congress. "It is an achievement that a coalition has been voted in twice," he said.

Praising Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi, Dwivedi said he is the future prime minister and added that it was the Rahul factor that worked largely for the party in states like Uttar Pradesh.

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Vicky Nanjappa & Syed Firdaus Ashraf in New Delhi