Congress, TDP To Forge Front Against Narendra Modi
In an effort to build an anti-BJP platform, N. Chandrababu Naidu and Rahul Gandhi, leaders of traditional rivals Telugu Desam Party and the Congress, met here on Thursday. They later announced that they would work along with other Opposition parties with the primary aim of defeating the Narendra Modi-led BJP government.
Mr. Naidu was back in the capital, for the second time in the week, to rally the Opposition parties under the slogan ‘Save Nation, Save Democracy.’
‘To defend the future’
Speaking to reporters after the meeting with Mr. Naidu, Mr. Gandhi said, “We had a very good meeting and the gist of it was that we have to defend democracy in this country, we have to defend the institutions and we have to defend the future of this country.”
While Mr. Naidu cited “democratic compulsion” to work with the Congress, Mr. Gandhi said both had agreed to ignore the past. “We have had a past as you mentioned. Both of us agreed that we are not going to get into the past. We are going to talk about the present and we are going to talk about the future because it is critical for our country, because of what is happening in the country. It’s imperative that all Opposition forces get together and provide a vision to the country,” Mr. Gandhi added.
Mr. Naidu acknowledged that the Congress is the lead Opposition party in the country. “We agreed to work together. Some of you are having doubts but it is now a democratic compulsion. We have to join together to protect the country. He [Rahul] is the main Opposition leader. We have our responsibilities to discharge,” he said.
Both evaded questions on who will lead the Opposition alliance. “We have agreed that the principal idea here is to defeat the BJP and to defend democracy and the institutions of this country. All other ideas will be discussed later. Everybody is going to work together,” Mr. Gandhi said.
In a packed day, Mr. Naidu met Nationalist Congress Party president Sharad Pawar, National Conference patriarch Farooq Abdullah, Rashtriya Lok Dal chief Ajit Singh, former Union Minister Arun Shourie, and Samajwadi Party leader Mulayam Singh. He said he was in constant touch with Trinamool Congress leader Mamata Banerjee and Janata Dal (S) patriarch Deve Gowda too.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by Daily Report and is published from The Hindu.)
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