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DMK-Congress begin talks, set ball rolling over seat-sharing

DMK-Congress begin talks, set ball rolling over seat-sharing
Setting the ball rolling to decide seat-sharing among them for the May 16 Assembly polls, the top leadership of DMK and Congress on Friday held their first round of talks here on the issue.

Kick-starting the process after the two parties entered into an alliance for the polls last month, Congress senior leaders Ghulam Nabi Azad and Mukul Wasnik met DMK chief Karunanidhi at his Gopalapuram residence and held talks.

Speaking to reporters after nearly an hour of talks, Azad said the “discussion of election strategy was the main purpose.” 

Answering a question, he said, “In so far as seat sharing is concerned, we just raised this issue. We have not firmed up numbers and we have given some time for DMK also (to decide).” 

“They will also think about numbers and finally we will also discuss among ourselves, with our leadership, the PCC chief and other (Tamil Nadu) leaders and may be the second time we will be able to firm up the numbers,” he said.

Asked how many seats his party was expecting, he said, “No. We did not discuss numbers. As I said, our basic purpose was to discuss election strategy and also to find out as to how many other groups are joining and how many have already joined. That was the basic purpose.” 

“Of course, we have told the DMK leadership that we should finalise the numbers also,”, he said, adding the number of seats that will be contested by Congress and other partners in the DMK-led front should be decided.

He said this is “not the final meeting,” and seat-sharing could be decided in subsequent talks. Azad and Wasnik also held talks with State Congress leaders at the party headquarters.

DMK allots five seats to MMK
Meanwhile, the DMK on Friday allocated five Assembly seats to Manithaneya Makkal Katchi (MMK) days after it set apart five seats to IUML, a long time ally of the Karunanidhi-led party. Emerging from the residence of DMK president Karunanidhi here, MMK chief M H Jawahirullah told reporters that his party has been allocated five seats.
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