Naveen Patnaik, Nitish Kumar cosy up; Didi too in fold

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New Delhi: Amid a suggestion for forming a 'Federal Front' of regional parties, Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Tuesday said it would be a 'healthy thing' to happen for the country and rejected the perception that the experiment of a third front would not be successful.
Patnaik, the BJD president who had severed ties with BJP in 2009 just ahead of last elections to the Lok Sabha and the state assembly, made it clear that his party will maintain equi-distance from both BJP and Congress, but it is likely that he is eyeing tie-up with  saffron’s party upset ally JD(U) and Mamata Banerjee’s Trinamool.
“I think it will be a healthy thing for the country to have a Federal Front or a Third Front,” he was quoted as saying by a news agency. He was asked about the suggestion made by the West Bengal Chief Minister that regional parties should get together to form a “Federal Front” to provide an alternative to Congress and BJP.
On the other hand Kumar, who had set a time limit for the BJP to name its prime ministerial candidate by the end of this year, has been in touch with Banerjee and Patnaik in his bid to keep the pot boiling for a front of the regional parties.
With Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi’s elevation as chief election campaigner staying intact after BJP patriarch L.K. Advani retracted his resignations, top leadership of the key NDA ally has gone into a huddle.
“Sharadji and Nitishji (party chief Sharad Yadav and Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar) will speak to each other tonight on the political developments in view of crisis in the BJP,” said JD(U) national general secretary K.C. Tyagi.
The JD(U) is hopeful that TD chief N. Chandra Babu Naidu will be its natural ally for having done business with him earlier too.

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