‘How can AAP set terms for attending opposition meet’: Congress source slams Kejriwal letter seeking support on Ordinance issue | India News

NEW DELHI: The Congress on Thursday hit out at Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal over his demand that opposition leaders clarify their positions vis-a-vis the Centre’s ordinance on control of administrative services in the national capital, ahead of the mega meeting at Patna on Friday.
“There is a meeting of all the parties in Patna on June 23, I request that in this meeting, the stand of all the parties on this ordinance and the strategy to defeat it in the Parliament should be discussed first,” read a letter by Kejriwal to opposition leaders on Thursday.
“At the meeting on June 23, the Congress will have to clear its stand on the Ordinance in front of everyone,” Kejriwal wrote further in his letter.
Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar would host a meeting of top opposition leaders on Friday in Patna as part of his continued efforts to forge a rainbow alliance of the Opposition against Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the BJP-led government at the Centre with an eye on next year’s general elections.
Questioning Aam Aadmi Party and the Delhi CM for trying to dictate terms to fellow Opposition leaders ahead of Friday’s meeting, a Congress source said, “How can the Aam Aadmi Party set conditions for attending an opposition meeting? Has any other party set such a condition? Everyone has issues and complaints, which is why such meetings are held to resolve matters and clarify positions. This is the first meeting of its kind and I am sure there will be many more going forward. Is the Lok Sabha session starting tomorrow?”
“The meeting is an attempt to forge unity among the opposition after accommodating their concerns, ahead of next year’s Lok Sabha elections. It is not right to give too much emphasis on regional issues. However, all parties are allowed to articulate their concerns, whatever they may be,” the source added.
“Such ploys to put pressure by setting terms for attending an opposition meeting is not good, the source said, adding that his party will not accept such terms. We will formally clarify our stand (on AAP‘s demand) once it is conveyed at the meeting,” the Congress source said.
Meanwhile, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Thursday said the Opposition parties will fight the BJP at the Centre like a collective family in next year’s Lok Sabha elections.
Mamata arrived in Patna on Thursday, ahead of the mega meeting of Opposition leaders on Friday.
On her arrival in Patna, Mamata called on Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) patriarch and former Bihar CM Lalu Yadav and his son and current Deputy CM Tejashwi Yadav.
Speaking to reporters in the Bihar capital, Mamata said, “It was wonderful to meet Lalu Prasad Yadav-ji. He is a senior leader. Unfortunately, he was in jail for so many days and then was hospitalised for a long time. It was good to see him. I cannot share the details of the meeting right now. All I can say is that we are here to fight collectively, like a family.”
The meeting will be attended by Congress, SP leader Akhilesh Yadav, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister MK Stalin, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, NCP leader Sharad Pawar, People’s Democratic Party chief Mehbooba Mufti, Uddhav Thackeray and others.
On June 22, Bihar Deputy Chief Minister Tejashwi Yadav said there are many leaders, who are much more experienced than Prime Minister Narendra Modi to take the country’s reins, and all Opposition leaders will put forth their views on a grand alliance at the meeting.
“Nobody can deny the fact that there are many leaders in the Opposition, who are much more experienced than PM Modi (in handling the country’s reins). All leaders will put forward their opinion at the meeting,” Bihar Deputy CM said.
Nitish Kumar has been spearheading efforts to bring all Opposition parties together against the BJP government at the Centre, ahead of next year’s Lok Sabha polls, and has already held one-on-one meetings with several top Opposition leaders including Rahul Gandhi, Mamata and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) patriarch Sharad Pawar, among others.

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