Congress chief Sonia Gandhi on Friday urged 19 like-minded political parties to rise above their differences and work together to snatch power from the BJP in the 2024 general elections. Notably, Sonia Gandhi chaired a virtual meeting of the opposition outfits.
The meeting was attended by chief ministers Mamata Banerjee, Uddhav Thackeray, MK Stalin and Hemant Soren as well as NCP supremo Sharad Pawar, former J&K CMs Farooq Abdullah, Omar Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti. Other prominent Opposition who logged in included CPM’s Sitaram Yechury, RJD’s Tejashwi Yadav, RLD’s Jayant Chaudhary, among others.
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi and former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh were also present in the meeting. Meanwhile, BSP, AAP and Samajwadi Party skipped the meeting.
The Congress leader urged the political parties to stay united not just in the Parliament, but outside it as well for the sake of national interest. Exemplifying, she said that it was due to the unity of the Opposition that the Centre had to amend the OBC bill. “The session was marked by the determined unity that all Opposition parties demonstrated for over twenty days in both the houses,” she said.
Matters of concern
The Congress President also said that she repeatedly asked the Centre to look into certain matters, including the Pegasus snooping scandal, which affects every citizen, repeal of the three anti-farmer laws, the price rise of essential commodities and the continuing assault on federalism and the institutions of our democracy.
“The recent Monsoon session of Parliament was a complete washout entirely due to the government’s obstinate and arrogant unwillingness to discuss and debate urgent issues of public importance”, Sonia said, while blaming the Centre for refusing a detailed debate on the key issues.
Meanwhile, Congress leaders said that the party will continue reaching out to like-minded parties to broaden the Opposition unity project but admit that for such efforts to pay off, the grand old party also needs to correct its course. Notably, a group of 23 Congress leaders had written a letter to Sonia Gandhi seeking sweeping changes in the way the party functions. However, the party is yet to bring any significant change in functioning despite losing elections across the country.
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