INDIA Bloc’s Key Meet Today, Day After Over 100 MPs Suspended In Parliament

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INDIA Bloc's Key Meet Today, Day After Over 100 MPs Suspended In Parliament

This will be the fourth INDIA bloc meeting since the first one held in Patna in June.

New Delhi:

Opposition bloc INDIA will hold its key strategy meeting in New Delhi today to discuss seat-sharing arrangements, formulate a joint campaign blueprint for the 2024 general elections, and recalibrate its plan of action following the setback in the recently held assembly polls in three Hindi heartland states. 

A day ahead of the mega opposition meet, a staggering 78 Members of Parliament (MPs) belonging to opposition parties were suspended from both houses – Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha – amidst heated protests demanding accountability for last week’s Parliament security breach. 

The suspensions were a consequence of the opposition MP’s participation in protests, urging a statement from Union Home Minister Amit Shah regarding the breach. 

This follows the suspension of 14 MPs last week, who were similarly advocating for transparency in addressing the security lapse.

READ | In Unprecedented Move, Close To 100 MPs Suspended From Parliament

“This government has reached the apex of dictatorship. They have the majority, and they are wielding the stick of power. They want to run Parliament like a party office. But that cannot happen. We were eager for a discussion. The productivity of Parliament before December 13 is for all to see. It seems they find it easier to talk to the media, but are scared to speak in Parliament,” said Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, one of the suspended MPs.

‘Better Late Than Never’

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, summoned by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in connection with the Delhi liquor policy case, held several high-profile meetings with key opposition leaders yesterday. Mr Kejriwal engaged in a 45-minute closed-door discussion with West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee before his meeting with former Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray and his trusted aide, Sanjay Raut. 

Speaking ahead of the mega opposition meet, Chief Minister Banerjee declared that the INDIA bloc’s prime ministerial candidate for the 2024 elections will be chosen only after the polls. Addressing internal squabbles like seat-sharing disagreements, Ms Banerjee asserted the alliance’s unwavering resolve to defeat the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).

READ | Ahead Of INDIA Bloc Meet, Arvind Kejriwal Greets Opposition Leaders

The Trinamool Congress (TMC) chief dismissed suggestions that the opposition alliance had faltered in setting its gears for the 2024 elections, saying, “It is better late than never,” while hinting that a potential three-way alliance between her party, Congress, and the Left is very much possible for West Bengal. “The BJP is not strong, we are weak. We need to work together to overcome it,” Ms Banerjee said.

Key Challenges 

INDIA bloc parties are banding together under the banner of “Main Nahin, Hum” (We, Not Me) to counter Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led NDA alliance. However, despite the message of collective action, the opposition alliance has yet to streamline an alternative common programme or appoint a convener, a spokesperson, and a common secretariat.

The BJP’s recent victories in Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, and Chhattisgarh have further intensified pressure on the opposition to present a united front. The Congress’s near wipeout in the Hindi heartland might force them to reinvent their action plan.

INDIA bloc’s first meeting was held in Patna on June 23, the second in Bengaluru on July 17-18, and the third in Mumbai between August 31 and September 1.

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