Dalmia did not meet CPI-M leaders at our behest: Samajwadi Party

Kolkata, July 1 (IANS) A day after Dalmia Group chairman Sanjay Dalmia met top leaders of the CPI-M here, the Samajwadi Party Monday distanced itself from the industrialist and clarified that he was not even an ordinary member of the party.

Dalmia had met Marxist leaders Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee and Gautam Deb at the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) city headquarters here Sunday and reportedly discussed the formation of an alternative front, as opposed to the BJP and the Congress.

In a hurriedly conveyed press conference here, Samajwadi Party general secretaries Ramgopal Yadav and Kironmoy Nanda dismissed reports that Dalmia's visit was officially authorised by the party.

"There have been news reports that Dalmia, in the capacity of party general secretary, held talks regarding formation of an alternative front. He is not even an ordinary member of the party. So, the question of him being nominated by the party to discuss matters with another party does not arise," Yadav told mediapersons here.

"We do not know why he held the meeting with the CPI-M leadership. I spoke to Mulayamji and he said that he had not sent any person to attend a meeting," said Nanda, who called up party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav.

Nanda said the party had already said that a third front was only a post-poll possibility, so the need for discussions on the issue before the elections did not arise.

"If needed, Mulayamji will speak to CPI-M general secretary Prakash Karat in New Delhi," Nanda said.

Deb, who immediately after Sunday's meeting called Mulayam Singh an "important ally in the CPI-M national struggles", refused to comment on the issue.

"We are enquiring into the matter and unless we are fully aware about the facts, we cannot comment," Deb told IANS.

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