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Mamata maange more: Realignment after Uttar Pradesh polls

Mamata Banerjee's Trinamool Congress is testing the waters for the first time in Uttar Pradesh. But it is not in coalition with the Congress, a party it partners in the United Progressive Alliance at the Centre.

Two BJP leaders - Rajiv Pratap Rudy and Shahnawaz Hussain - met the Ms Banerjee, the West Bengal Chief Minister in Kolkata last month. And she presented Mr Rudy a painting which is now tucked away in of the private lounges of Delhi's Constitution Club.

The BJP says it was a social call. "It's true that we went and met Mamata Banerjee, but it was only to give condolences to her for her mother's death. Congress people are just insecure about the meeting. We are not authorised to make overtures."

The BJP may be playing it down but sources tell NDTV that there have been follow-up meetings with other leaders like Rajnath Singh. Congress sources say that the BJP is trying to woo Ms Banerjee by promising to back her as the prime ministerial candidate. The meeting, held in December, is now giving the Congress the jitters. They fear that it may be the BJP's way of reaching out to a UPA ally for forming new alliances.

While the Congress in Delhi refuses to articulate fears openly, the Trinamool seems to enjoy its ally's unease. "Yes, there have been many rumours but Mamata has many friends, many enemies," says Trinamool's Sukhendu Roy.

At the root of all this is the distrust that has creeped into the Congress- Trinamool relationship. Observers says both seem to be marking time till the UP election results to figure out their next plan of action.

Keywords- Mamata maange more: Realignment after Uttar Pradesh polls



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