At Sonia Gandhi’s Dinner For Friends From 19 Parties, A Swipe At BJP

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NEW DELHI: The leaders of 19 parties came to the dinner hosted by Sonia Gandhi that was destined to consolidate the unity of the opposition in parliament and beyond, in particular the Lok Sabha elections of 2019. Rahul Gandhi, the president of Congress He called the dinner “an opportunity” for the leaders to “get to know each other and get involved”.

“Much political talk, but much more important: tremendous positive energy, warmth and genuine affection,” he tweeted.

The interaction is the second during the parliamentary budget session that has seen a united opposition interrupting the proceedings without stopping for a week. The last one had 17 parties; Satish Chandra Misra of Bahujan Samaj Party and former BJP ally in Bihar Jiten Ram Manjhi, were key additions to this meeting.

Sonia Gandhi, president of the national alliance led by Congress, UPA, urged the parties last month to set aside minor differences to join in “the best interest of keeping the BJP out of power,” stating that it will work with. .. political groups of mind to defeat the BJP in the election of Lok Sabha in 2019.

Outside, Sharad Yadav spoke of the dinner being one step closer to aligning opposition on the same side in the 201 Lok Sabha elections.

Tejashwi Yadav of the Rashtriya Janata Dal seemed to agree, contrasting the progressive improvement in the ranks of the opposition with the Telugu Desam party by withdrawing its ministers from the team of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

“The opposition parties are united … and the NDA is breaking down,” he said, pointing to the TDP of Chandrababu Naidu and Shiv Sena, the BJP ally of Maharashtra who has increasingly been its most critical critic.

rahul gandhi congress dinner

“Today, the nation faces many difficulties,” said Randeep Singh Surjewala, communications in charge of Congress, blaming the government for not allowing them to raise issues such as billions of rupees that are taken out of the country under government supervision. .

The RJD was represented by the two sons of party chief Lalu Prasad, former Deputy Chief Minister Tejashwi Yadav and Misa Bharti.

However, attendance at the dinner is unlikely to be an indicator of where the opposition parties are before the next general election.

The Samajwadi party of Akhilesh Yadav, who had left the Congress as an alliance partner in the Lok Sabha by-elections and tied with his archrival BSP, was represented by his uncle Ram Gopal Yadav.

Trinamool Congress’ Mamata Banerjee, who was represented by the legislator of the Sudip Bandyopadhya party, was the first to welcome the call of the Telangana chief Minister, K Chandrashekhar Rao, to float a third front that does not belong to the BJP or Congress.

“I will work with you,” said Mamata Banerjee, greeting Mr. Rao’s suggestion with great enthusiasm. Hemant Soren of Jharkhand Mukti Morcha, who was also at the dinner, welcomed Mr. Rao’s initiative.

The prominent leaders present were Sharad Pawar of the National Congress Party, former chief Ministers Omar Abdullah and Babulal Marandi, as well as Ajit Singh of RLD.