Thursday, February 28, 2002, Chandigarh, India


M A I N   N E W S

Mulayam stakes claim
Delegation meets President

SP leader Mulayam Singh Yadav
SP leader Mulayam Singh Yadav shows the letter, which he handed over to the Governor staking his claim to form the next government in the state at Rajbhavan in Lucknow on Wednesday.
— PTI photo

Lucknow, February 27
Mr Mulayam Singh Yadav, leader of the single largest Samajwadi Party in Uttar Pradesh, today staked claim to form government, but Governor Vishnu Kant Shastri indicated that he was not inclined to accept the claim as he had not submitted the list of supporting MLAs.

Soon after Mr Yadav called on him to stake claim, Mr Shastri told reporters that the party staking claim to form the government should furnish a list of MLAs supporting it.

Mr Shastri said the SP leader had referred to the tradition of inviting the single largest party to form the government without submitting any list.

“I told him there is also a tradition of asking for the list of supporters,” Mr Shastri said adding that Mr Yadav admitted that such a tradition was there”.

Asked whether he would consider Mr Yadav’s claim even if such a list was not submitted, the Governor, however, replied that he would consider the claim.

Mr Shastri said he would speak to important leaders of major parties in the course of his exercise to explore the possibility of formation of a stable government.

The Uttar Pradesh unit of the BJP said on Wednesday that Mr Yadav was bound to give the list of supporting MLAs to the state Governor before he was invited to form government.

Reacting to the news of the Samajwadi Party staking claim to form government, state BJP chief Kalraj Mishra said he was sure that the Governor would like to know the source of Mr Mulayam Singh’s support before inviting him to form the government.

In New Delhi, President K.R. Narayanan today expressed his inability to interfere in the process of government formation in Uttar Pradesh, saying he had limited constitutional powers.

Mr Narayanan is said to have made his position amply clear to an eight-member delegation of leaders of left parties, the Samajwadi Party, the Rashtriya Janata Dal and the JD (S) who requested him to use his good offices to counsel the UP Governor to invite the leader of the single largest party in the UP Assembly, Mr Mulayam Singh Yadav, to form government.

The delegation, which called on him this evening made the request in a brief letter.

Confirming this, Leader of the CPM in the Lok Sabha Somnath Chatterjee said the President assured the delegation that he would “consider what can be done in the matter.”

Mr Chatterjee said although the RJD was not a constituent of the People’s Front, it chose to express solidarity with the delegation. PTI

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