'No difference of opinion with Sonia Gandhi'

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh yesterday said that he has no difference of opinion with Congress president Sonia Gandhi. “I can say in all truthfulness that there is no difference of opinion between me and the Congress president. We work together on almost every issue,” he told media persons on board his special aircraft while returning from a five-day official visit to Japan and Thailand.

Manmohan Singh
Manmohan Singh said that where consultation is needed, he does consults Sonia Gandhi. File pic

“Where consultation is needed, I consult the Congress president, and therefore this perception, that on certain issues, there were differences of opinion, there is no truth in that,” he added while replying to a question on the perceived trust deficit between him and Sonia Gandhi over the recent controversy on the resignations of the ministers for railways and law. On the issue of the Congress seeking new allies for next year’s general elections after the exit of Trinamool Congress and the DMK, Manmohan Singh said the Congress would work on this.

No permanent foes
“In politics, there are no permanent allies and no permanent enemies. These possibilities, some people coming in, some people going out, I think, they have to be accepted as they are,” he said. Asked if the Congress has been approached by the DMK for support in the Rajya Sabha elections for a seat from Tamil Nadu, the prime minister said, “I can’t say on behalf of the Congress high command. These are matters, which are discussed at the highest level in our party. It will not be proper for me to pre-judge what stand the Congress party will take.”

He sought the support of all political parties to ensure smooth proceedings of parliament so that necessary legislations could be passed. Singh said his regret as prime minister was that many bills had not been passed due to the “obstructionist” and “impatient” attitude of the opposition.

Too many objections
“The obstructionist role of the opposition increased in recent years. My great regret is that many important bills have not been passed (due to the opposition’s attitude),” Singh said. “They never expected that we would win the election for UPA-1. But they were doubly disappointed when we won the election for UPA-2. Therefore, the obstructionist role of the opposition has increased enormously.” 

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