The United National Party (UNP) has invited the Tamil Makkal Viduthalai Pullikal (TMVP) for “secret” talks in an attempt to garner their support for common opposition Presidential candidate General Sarath Fonseka, UNP sources told Daily Mirror online.
Daily Mirror online has learnt that the UNP has even nominated an emissary to negotiate with the TMVP, a government ally led by Eastern Province Chief Minister Sivanesathurai Chandrakanthan, alias Pillayan.
However according to UNP sources the TMVP is under pressure from the government to support the candidacy of incumbent President Mahinda Rajapaksa at the Presidential elections scheduled to be held later this month and so is unlikely to change its position.
Former CWC strongman R. Yogarajan, who crossed over to the UNP recently, had even told reporters that the TMVP was keen on extending support to General Fonseka at the polls. However the TMVP rejected the claims and said it stood by President Mahinda Rajapaksa.
Indications of a possible rift between the Eastern Province Chief Minister Pillayan and the government began to emerge after he began to demand police powers for the province, a demand which was rejected by government Minister Vinayagamurthi Muralitharan alias Karuna Amman.
Both Sivanesathurai Chandrakanthan and Minister Vinayagamurthi Muralitharan have since been openly criticizing each other at public rallies and events and most recently supporters of both sides clashed in the East over propaganda material being erected in the area in support of President Mahinda Rajapaksa.
The TMVP could not be reached by Daily Mirror online for a comment on the UNP claims.