After the grand Opposition meeting was held in Bihar’s Patna on Friday, June 23, as many as 17 opposition parties have announced that they will come together to fight the 2024 Lok Sabha elections, in order to defeat the BJP. Apart from this, after the Patna meeting hosted by Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, it has also been announced that the next round of meeting will be held in Himachal Pradesh’s Shimla, and will be led by Congress President Mallikarjun Kharge.
The meeting of the opposition parties carried on for almost 4-hours, after which a press conference was organized, during which, JDU Chief Nitish Kumar said that the opposition leaders will meet again soon to finalize the blueprint of their plan for fighting together. Addressing the press, Nitish Kumar also said, “We had a good meeting and several leaders expressed their views during the meeting. 17 parties have decided to work together and contest the Lok Sabha elections unitedly”.
Accusing the BJP of acting against national interest, as it was trying to change the history of the country, Kumar stated that the united opposition was working in national interest.
“We have decided to prepare a common agenda and will take decisions in the next meeting on how to move forward. We will have to evolve separate plans for every state, and we will work together to dethrone the BJP at the centre”, said Mallikarjun Kharge.
Trinamool Congress (TMC) Supremo and West Bengal Chief Minister, Mamata Banerjee, during the press conference, said that the first meeting was organized in Patna as “whatever starts from Patna takes the shape of a public movement”, and called the Opposition meeting a beginning of a history.
“We are all united and will fight unitedly against the BJP. The BJP wants to change history but we will ensure that history is saved”, added Banerjee.
Congress leader and former Wayanad MP, Rahul Gandhi, said, “We may have some differences but have decided to work together with flexibility, and will work to protect our ideology”.
In the meantime, while the opposition leaders kept on making tall claims of unity, and staying together to ‘fight together’, their in-fighting got highlighted right after the very first meeting held on Friday, as the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), skipped the press briefing, and right after the meeting, distanced itself from the Congress through an official statement.
The AAP vs Congress divide can be seen emerging over the issue of the centre’s ordinance pertaining to the powers of the LG in the national capital, wherein the AAP wants the Congress RS MPs to condemn and speak against the ordinance, which has not been done yet. Therefore, the AAP has decided not to attend any opposition meetings which would have the Congress as a member, until the grand old party condemns and votes against the ordinance.