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Won't go to Delhi with a begging bowl, says NC

Source: PTI
May 18, 2009 16:20 IST
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The National Conference (NC) today said that its support to UPA was "unconditional" and the party will not bargain for any post in the Union council of ministers.

"Our support to UPA is unconditional. We will not bargain for any thing or any post (in union council of ministers)", Chief Minister Omar Abdullah told reporters at a press conference organised to announce joining of Independent MP from Ladakh Ghulam Hassan Khan in the NC.

"There is no question of bargaining. Both of us (NC president Farooq Abdullah and himself) are sitting in Srinagar. We will not go to Delhi with a begging bowl," he said.

Asked whether NC will get a Cabinet berth as its tally has gone up to four in the state, Omar said, "We have played a part in the victory of UPA. I have participated in the election campaign for the UPA in the country. Beyond it, We have not to ask for."

Farooq Abdullah in a lighter vein said he wanted to become president of India. However, his son quickly chipped in by saying, "There is no vacancy for that".

The remark of Farooq Abdullah was in response to a question about the portfolio he would like to have in the new Union cabinet as it is appeared certain that he will be a minister.

The Chief Minister said return of Khan, an NC rebel who contested independently, to the party fold is something we wanted.

"We sent an invitation to Khan only yesterday when our coalition partner Congress desired so. He (Khan) joined unconditionally," he said.

However, Omar denied talk that Khan contested as an independent at the behest of NC. "There was no contact between him (Khan) and us since he decided to contest against the wishes of the party."

The Chief Minister said NC had offered south Kashmir Anantnag Parliamentary seat to Congress and wanted to contest from Ladakh itself as per seat sharing agreement but the Congress insisted to contest from Ladakh.

Omar said NC believes in principle politics and will continue to do so. "We laid the foundation for a stable government and no mid-term chief ministers when we entered power sharing agreement with Congress in the state."

Asked about his views for role of UPA allies which contested elections on their own including former railway minister Lalu Prasad, Omar said "I believe a consensus should be reached among the pre-poll allies."

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