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"I Am Not Willing To Move To Delhi Permanently"

IN an interview to Outlook, Laloo Prasad Yadav speaks on his agenda for the upcoming elections. Excerpts:

"I Am Not Willing To Move To Delhi Permanently"
What is your priority now that you have assumed a national role?

As of now, the most important issue is electoral strategy. We will try to form a clean and efficient government in alliance with the Left.

Is it a lesson learnt from the recent hawala scam?

Hawala or no hawala, this is what we have always aimed for.

What role will the hawala issue play in the elections?

Who'll make an issue of it? Left ko chhodke kaun achhuta hai (Besides the Left, who is untouched)? Everyone takes money from business houses. Unless there is a law such things can't be stopped.

Who will your alliance partners be?

We will talk to Mulayam Singh Yadav in Uttar Pradesh. BSP bhi mil jaaye to achha hai (It would be nice if the BSP also joined us).

But the CPI(M) wants you to go with Mulayam Singh.

We will certainly talk to him first. But I would also like to involve the BSP. Otherwise the anti-BJP votes will get split in Uttar Pradesh. In Andhra Pradesh too, we want the two Telugu Desam factions to unite so we can form a government at the Centre.

Hegde seems to favour a non-BJP gov-ernment under Rao. Do you agree?

Coalitions don't work. We will form our own government with the Left. Otherwise we will remain in the Opposition.

Will you support the Congress if it becomes necessary to stop the BJP?

One is communal, the other is status quo-ist. Hum dono ko equal footing mein rakhte hain (We keep both on an equal footing).

Your party normally follows the one-man one-post norm. You are party president and chief minister. Will you relinquish one of the two ?

Bhaari sankat hai mere paas (I have a major problem right now.) All I can say is that there are much bigger issues to look at. Wait till the polls. But I am not willing to move to Delhi permanently.

Violence continues in Bihar, by and against Naxalites. Why is it so?

They are frustrated. They are challenging the whole system through violence.

But they could have genuine grievances regarding land and wages.

If they have, they should come forward for a solution which is just and legal. Ye mamla to shantipurvak, kayde kanoon se hi hal hoga na (This problem can be sorted out only through peaceful, legal means).

Is there any agenda before the government for genuine land reforms?

We will introduce a passbook system for evidence of land ownership. We also intend to distribute identified surplus land.

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