Former Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh Akhilesh Yadav and president of Samajwadi Party (SP), one of the key constituents of the anti-BJP alliance taking shape ahead of the next general elections, was closeted for about three hours with Bharat Rashtra Samithi (BRS) president and Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao here on Monday.
According to BRS party sources, the two leaders had a one-on-one meeting immediately after a lunch hosted by Mr. Rao for Mr. Yadav and a few of his close confidantes who arrived here along with him. On his arrival at the Begumpet airport in a private aircraft, Mr. Yadav was given a warm welcome and was received by Telangana Ministers T. Srinivas Yadav and V. Prashanth Reddy and MLC Palla Rajeshwar Reddy.
The meeting of the two party chiefs assumes significance as it comes barely five days after the anti-BJP parties’ meeting held at Patna and attended by several Opposition parties including Congress, Janatal Dal (United), Rashtriya Janata Dal, Aam Admi Party, Trinamool Congress, DMK, Shiv Sen (UBT) among others. However, BRS did not attend the meeting without specifying officially whether it was invited for the meeting or not.
At the Congress party’s public meeting held at Khammam on Sunday, Rahul Gandhi went to town stating that he (Congress) opposed invitation to BRS for the June 28 meeting and had made it clear that Congress would stay away from the meeting in case BRS attended it. On Monday, the BRS sought to know why he was silent on it till Sunday if there was truth in it.
The BRS leaders who had lunch along with Mr. Rao and Mr. Yadav stated that the latter had spoken with them briefly about what transpired at the Patna meeting, before going to the dining hall at Pragathi Bhavan, the official residence of Telangana Chief Minister. They, however, admitted that the meeting between the two leaders assumes significance with the next meeting slated at Bengaluru in the second week of this month.
The meeting, however, stands postponed now till the completion of the monsoon session of Parliament commencing on July 20.