mamata: Turf battle? Mamata Banerjee calls Presidential ballot meet, raises eyebrows | India Information – Occasions of India

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NEW DELHI: In a transfer parallel to Congress chief Sonia Gandhi’s initiative to rally opposition events for placing up a joint candidate within the presidential polls, West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee on Saturday wrote to 22 politicians of non-BJP outfits for unity within the contest for Rashtrapati Bhavan, laying naked as soon as once more the fissures and the tendency for one-upmanship inside the anti-Modi camp.
Although Banerjee’s letter searching for a “fruitful confluence of opposition voices” in New Delhi on June 15 referred to as for a “robust and efficient opposition towards the divisive forces” and requested opposition CMs and leaders to take part in a “joint assembly” within the nationwide capital, the missive left Congress and others in anti-BJP camp shocked and triggered an nearly instant pushback from CPM normal secretary Sitaram Yechury.
Describing the letter-writing to sew collectively opposition unity as a “unilateral” transfer that might “hurt opposition unity”, Yechury mentioned June 15 has already been determined because the day when senior leaders of opposition events, together with Congress chairperson Sonia Gandhi, NCP chief Sharad Pawar and Tamil Nadu chief minister MK Stalin, will meet and focus on the opposition technique concerning the presidential polls.
“Usually, these conferences are determined after consultations and glued on a mutually handy date. Normally, the single-largest social gathering takes the initiative. These consultations for a gathering had been already occurring when the letter was unilaterally despatched and publicised,” Yechury mentioned.
Opposition exercise to establish a presidential candidate with “secular and progressive” credentials kicked off quickly after the Election Fee sounded the ballot bugle on Thursday, when Sonia dialled Yechury, Pawar, Banerjee and DMK chief Stalin. She additionally deputed Congress chief Mallikarjun Kharge to make an outreach to like-minded events in addition to fence-sitters BJD, YSRCP and TRS to collect whether or not they would facet with the NDA or the opposition bloc within the presidential polls.
Some within the opposition camp argued that Mamata’s transfer will not be seen as a case of “brinksmanship”. A senior chief signalled that with out BJD, YSRCP and TRS on the opposition facet, a presidential contest would solely be symbolic because the NDA would comfortably garner the numbers it must elect its nominee.
“There isn’t a query of ego. There’s a job to be executed and that’s to arrange a badly wanted opposition platform and to establish a robust candidate,” a senior chief mentioned.
Nonetheless, he acknowledged that cementing opposition’s ranks to forestall BJP from getting one among its personal elected as the following President just isn’t going to be straightforward. Whereas Mamata’s transfer has raised just a few hackles, many within the opposition additionally underline Congress’s incapability to safe the assist of regional satraps like Naveen Patnaik and Okay Chandrashekhar Rao, CMs of Odisha and Telangana, respectively.
“Congress should be taught to cede house and accommodate a non-Congress candidate because the opposition’s presidential nominee”, mentioned an opposition chief.
In response to Mamata’s letter, Congress mentioned Sonia Gandhi initiated the discussions on the presidential election, forgetting all political variations, because the demand of the occasions is to discover a candidate who, as President, can shield the Structure. “The time is ripe for rising above our variations for the sake of the nation and its individuals,” the AICC mentioned.

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