New Delhi: West Bengal Chief Minister and Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee Friday gave a veiled warning to the Congress on her demand for interest moratorium to the state following her meeting with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, saying her party's options for the presidential polls were open.

She also reiterated her opposition to the central government's proposed anti-terror hub.

"Our options are all open. There has been no talk regarding candidature (in presidential elections). There is time. If they want to talk, they will let us know," Banerjee told reporters after her meeting with the Prime Minister at his 7, RCR residence.

She did not directly answer a question about possibility of Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee emerging as the Congress choice in the presidential polls. "I am myself (there) first," she quipped. Banerjee conveyed that the Prime Minister had not given a commitment on her demand for three-year interest moratorium and said she will wait for a few days.

"I did not talk of deadlines. If it doesn't happen, we will see." She said in democracy, talks are always good. "We will keep talking. I am waiting for last 11 months for the solution," she said.

"During the last 11 months, I have met the Prime Minister 10 times and Finance Minister 20 times. I am waiting for a few days, after that I will decide politically what can be done for my state," she said.

Banerjee had on Thursday met Congress president Sonia Gandhi and Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav and is believed to have discussed presidential polls with them.  A Trinamool Congress leader indicated after her meeting with Gandhi that Banerjee was likely to back a Congress candidate in presidential polls. Political significance was also being attached to her meeting with Prime Minister.

"I cannot say about his (Prime Minister's) opinion. Serious discussions are taking place," Banerjee said and added that no solution had so far been found. She said she has struggled for the welfare of the people and expressed confidence that she will win ultimately.

Asked about possible problems of Finance Ministry in granting moratorium on loan repayment, she said she will go by what was good for her people. "What is digestible to me is not digestible to the Finance Minister. The food which is digestible to my people is digestible to me. Whatever will be done, I will wait for few days."

Banerjee had on April 21 given a 15-day ultimatum to the central government to accept her demand and warned that its "indifferent attitude" could become a "big issue". However she latter backtracked, saying it was not an ultimatum.

Banerjee said the state was not in a position to pay interest on debt incurred by the Left Front government. "It is the only state which had 35 years of misrule," she said. Banerjee said her government did not have funds even for development projects.

"No other state has suffered like Bengal. Bengal is a special case. We have to pay Rs.22,000 crore as interest on loan repayment on central loan," she said. Banerjee also continued her opposition to the proposed National Counter Terrorism Centre. She said both the central government and states had their boundaries which cannot be crossed. "NCTC is interference with the federal structure," Banerjee said.

Yet to be approached for Prez polls:Jaya

However, AIADMK supremo and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa on Saturday said her party was yet to decide on the ensuing presidential polls and nobody had approached her so far on the issue.
  
"AIADMK has not taken a stand yet and no one has approached me with a proposal so far," she told reporters here while leaving for Delhi to attend the meeting on NCTC, chaired by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.
    
She said she was going to the national capital only to attend the conference and had "no other plans." Jayalalithaa, among a set of non-congress Chief Ministers including Mamata Banerjee (West Bengal), Narendra Modi (Gujarat) and Naveen Patnaik (Odisha), is opposed to the controversial National Counter Terrorism Centre, claiming it is against the federal structure and have demanded that it be discussed separately.

(Agencies)

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