INDIA bloc leaders meet at Kharge’s residence to discuss possibilities of government formation

The Oposition leaders are likely to deliberate on the Lok Sabha poll results and whether to bring on board the Janata Dal (United) and TDP.

ByPTI

Published Jun 05, 2024 | 7:13 PMUpdatedJun 05, 2024 | 9:19 PM

INDIA bloc leaders meet at Kharge’s residence to discuss possibilities of government formation

Opposition INDIA bloc leaders began crucial deliberations on Wednesday, 5 June, exploring the possibilities of government formation, the alliance’s future strategy and whether to reach out to former allies Nitish Kumar and N Chandrababu Naidu.

The leaders met at Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge’s residence in New Delhi, a day after Lok Sabha election results were declared.

While the BJP won 240 seats and the Congress emerged as the second largest party with 99 seats, the NDA has the majority number with 293 seats and is holding a parallel meeting on government formation. The opposition alliance has 234 seats.

The Oposition leaders are likely to deliberate on the Lok Sabha poll results and whether to bring on board the Janata Dal (United) and TDP to cobble up the numbers required for government formation.

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Top leaders attending the meeting

Top Congress leaders, including party chief Mallikarjun Kharge, Congress Parliamentary Party chairperson Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi Vadra also attended the meeting.

Opposition leaders attending meeting included Tamil Nadu Chief Minister MK Stalin and TR Baalu of the DMK, Jharkhand Chief Minister Champai Soren and Kalpana Soren of the JMM, Sharad Pawar and Supriya Sule of the NCP-SP, Akhilesh Yadav and Ram Gopal Yadav (SP), Abhishek Banerjee (TMC), Tejashwi Yadav (RJD), Sanjay Raut and Arvind Sawant (Shiv Sena-UBT), Omar Abdullah (JKNC), Sitaram Yechury (CPI(M)), D Raja (CPI), Sanjay Singh and Raghav Chadha (AAP) and NK Premchandran (RSP).

While the BJP on its own fell short of a majority, it may, as things stand, form the government on the back of its allies. With support from Naidu’s TDP and Nitish Kumar’s JD(U), which won 16 and 12 seats in Andhra Pradesh and Bihar, respectively, and other alliance partners, the NDA has crossed the halfway mark.

The TDP and JD(U) have already dismissed suggestions of defecting to the Opposition alliance and have clearly stated that they will remain with the NDA. Sources, however, said the Congress and some other party leaders are already trying to woo them and have been in touch.

Ahead of the INDIA bloc meeting, RJD’s Tejashwi Yadav gave a “wait and watch” message. When asked if the Opposition is looking at getting the required numbers to stake claim on government formation, Yadav said, “We have come for the meeting. Have patience, wait and watch what happens”.

Rahul Gandhi had earlier asserted that the Congress would not take any decision on government formation without holding consultations with its alliance partners. He also refrained from commenting on whether the alliance will reach out to TDP and JD(U).

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