Reported By: Kamalika Sengupta
Edited By: Pathikrit Sen Gupta
Last Updated: March 14, 2023, 01:03 IST
Sources say the issue of ‘central agencies threatening opposition parties’ may also come up. File pic/PTI
Sources say Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) convener Arvind Kejriwal may also invite opposition leaders to Delhi in a bid to form a united front against the BJP. However, the Congress may not be a part of these plans
Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav is likely to meet West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee on March 17 in Kolkata. While SP leaders are calling this a courtesy meeting, it assumes significance with the 2024 general elections approaching closer.
The former Uttar Pradesh CM will be in Kolkata for two days to attend party meetings, say sources.
Akhilesh Yadav and Mamata Banerjee share a close relationship, say sources. The Trinamool Congress (TMC) chairperson also travelled to UP to campaign for the Samajwadi Party in the 2022 assembly elections eventually won by the Bharatiya Janata Party in a landslide. Akhilesh too had earlier supported Mamata in her 2021 re-election bid in the West Bengal polls.
Sources say Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) convener Arvind Kejriwal may also invite opposition leaders to Delhi in a bid to form a united front against the BJP. However, the Congress may not be a part of these plans.
The TMC and AAP do not have good relations with the Congress. There was a war of words between Congress’s Rahul Gandhi and Trinamool’s Abhishek Banerjee around the recent Meghalaya elections.
Sources say, while the TMC and AAP want to take on the BJP, they don’t wish to cede any room to the Congress.
While Mamata Banerjee hasn’t explicitly stated that she doesn’t wish to work with the Congress, the bitterness between the two parties has sporadically come to the fore, particularly since Trinamool has “poached” several Congress leaders in its bid to expand its national influence.
However, a TMC leader said, “In 1977 (when the Indira Gandhi-led Congress was defeated by the Janata alliance), where was opposition unity before elections? People are unhappy with the BJP and they will go.”
The Mamata-Akhilesh meeting further fuels the buzz of non-Congress opposition parties planning to take on the BJP individually in their own bastions.
Sources say the issue of “central agencies threatening opposition parties” may also come up.
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