Maharashtra Chief Minister and Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray will attend the meeting of opposition leaders called by Congress president Sonia Gandhi on August 20, news agency PTI reported on Friday.
Sena leader Sanjay Raut told the news agency that Thackeray will attend the meeting through video link.
Congress is part of the Shiv Sena-led ruling coalition in Maharashtra along with the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP). The NCP’s chief spokesperson Nawab Malik said he didn’t know whether his party had been invited or if it was going to attend the meeting.
Congress President Sonia Gandhi has reportedly called a virtual meeting of like-minded Opposition parties on August 20. TMC chief Mamata Banerjee, Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray, DMK chief MK Stalin, JMM Executive President Hemant Soren will participate in the meeting.
This will be the second such meeting of opposition parties within a month.
On 3 August, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi hosted a breakfast meeting, which was attended by over 100 MPs of Congress and 15 other opposition parties. The Congress termed it as “historic” and a “trailer” ahead of the 2024 Lok Sabha polls.
Several opposition MPs led by Gandhi later cycled to Parliament to highlight the issue of fuel price hike. Apart from the Congress, MPs of Trinamool Congress, NCP, Shiv Sena, DMK, CPI-M, CPI, RJD and Samajwadi Party attended the meeting.
Besides IUML, RSP, KCM, LJD and RSP, leaders of JMM and JKNC were also present at the meeting. In total, 17 opposition parties were invited, but the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) and Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) did not attend.
Addressing the meeting, Rahul Gandhi said the opposition represent 60 per cent of the votes of this country but is treated by the government as if they represent nobody.
“When the government shuts us up in Parliament, they are not just humiliating us as MPs but they are humiliating the voice of the people of India and the majority voice of India. The single motive to invite you is that we unite this force. When all this voice unites, the more powerful this voice will become and the more difficult it will become for the BJP and RSS to suppress this voice,” Gandhi said.
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