NEW DELHI: Opposition leaders holding hands in unison at the swearing in of Karnataka CM in May, the photo-op at the iftar party hosted by Congress President Rahul Gandhi last week and latest, four non-BJP Chief Ministers throwing their weight behind Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal — there are more such Opposition ‘show of strength’ meetings in store in coming months.
The Opposition has planned to hold one such meeting every month, which is expected to be attended by all the Opposition party leaders as a “show of strength” and also work out regional alliances in run-up to the three Assembly elections in MP, Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh — towards the year-end and the 2019 Lok Sabha elections.
Rahul Gandhi’s iftar party at Taj Palace seems to have kick-started the chain of such gathering planned in months to come. Another big event is being planned in Lucknow, where West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee is expected to share stage BSP supremo Mayawati, SP chief Akhilesh Yadav and other leaders of the Opposition parties. The event is expected to see in presence Chief Ministers of some opposition rules states.
“There are plans to hold one event every month where everyone (Opposition) comes together on a single platform as a show of strength,” said a leader of the Opposition.
Rebel JD(U) leader Sharad Yadav, who started a ‘Sanjhi Virasat’ initiative to bring unity among political parties to defeat communal forces, is planning to hold a mega event attended by the Opposition leaders to take on the BJP.
The sit-in protest by Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal has received support from the entire opposition leadership. TMC chief Mamata Banerjee, Andhra Pradesh CM N Chandrababu Naidu, Kerala CM Pinrayi Vijayan, Karnataka CM HD Kumaraswamy even took up the matter with Prime Minister Narendra Modi Sunday.
Other Opposition leaders Akhilesh Yadav, Mayawati, CPM general secretary Sitaram Yechury, RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav, DMK leader M K Stalin and Kamal Hassan among others have lent support to Kejriwal’s protest over IAS officers strike in Delhi.
The Opposition has been working on the state-wise alliances to put up a fight against the BJP in the Assembly and general elections. BSP is already working on alliances with the Indian National Lok Dal (INLD) in Haryana, JD(S) in Karnataka, RJD in Bihar and SP in UP.
“All Opposition parties more or less agree to the idea of having state-wise understanding in run upto the 2019 elections and rest will depend on post election,” said the leader.