National Lok Dal President Ajit Singh on Monday ruled out the possibility of his party backing Congress for the Rajya Sabha elections in Uttar Pradesh in July in lieu of a cabinet berth in the Union government.
'There will be no adjustment with Congress for the sake of getting a berth in the (union) cabinet as a reward," he told reporters in Ghaziabad. Ten Rajya Sabha seats are falling vacant in Uttar Pradesh in July. Seven of these are held by SP, 2 by BSP and one by BJP.
Congress, which has 20 MLAs in the Uttar Pradesh Assembly, could bank on support of RLD, which has 10 MLAs, to bolster its chances to get one of the Rajya Sabha seats.
Singh's statement has come amid reports that Congress was negotiating with RLD for re-election of its sitting Rajya Sabha member Captain Satish Sharma, considered close to Gandhi family. Reports also say that Singh has been been promised a "suitable reward" in the event of his joining the UPA.
In the Lok Sabha RLD, an opposition party, has five members.
Earlier, addressing a gathering of farmers at Shyampur Jat near Hapur city, 50 km from Ghaziabad, the RLD chief criticised the land acquisition policies of Mayawati government for Yamuna Express Highway and other projects.
He alleged that farmers were booked under false criminal cases if they raised their voice against land acquisition.
Singh assured sugarcane farmers that he will raise his voice in their support if mills do not pay their dues within a reasonable time after the end of crushing season.
On the Harit Pradesh issue, he said western Uttar Pradesh will develop only when it is made a new state. PTI