Congress plays down Mamata threat


    New Delhi, (IANS) The Congress Saturday played down West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s angry statement that the party was free to walk out of the coalition with her Trinamool Congress in the state, saying that disagreements were natural in an alliance and would be sorted out.

    Congress spokesperson Abhishek Manu Singhvi said disagreements in coalition politics didn’t mean that communication channels were blocked.

    “In a coalition arrangement, disagreements do occur. Disagreements are valued in a coalition. These issues ought to be sorted out,” Singhvi told reporters.

    Singhvi was repeatedly asked about Banerjee lashing out at the Congress in West Bengal and saying it was free to call off ties with her Trinamool Congress. But Singhvi declined a straight answer, saying tactfully that he could not be provoked over the issue. “I am immune to provocations by the media.”

    “I would request all not to react aggressively. All these issues would be sorted out,” he said.

    Asked about the Trinamool chief’s remarks that the Congress was scared of her party, Singhvi said: “There is no question of the 125-year-old all-India party being scared of anyone or any political challenge. I am not naming any regional or national party but this holds true for the entire national (political spectrum).”

    The Trinamool Congress is a major alliance partner of the ruling United Progressive Alliance government at the centre, and heads the ruling state alliance.