Bihar CM Nitish Kumar meets Kharge and Rahul Gandhi, discusses road map for opposition unity

Bihar CM Nitish Kumar meets Kharge and Rahul Gandhi, discusses road map for opposition unity

By India Today Web Desk: Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Monday met Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge and party leader Rahul Gandhi in New Delhi, the second such meeting in the last one-and-a-half months. The meeting is part of Nitish Kumar’s efforts to foster Opposition unity to take on the Bharatiya Janta Party (BJP) in the 2024 Lok Sabha elections.

Nitish Kumar met Kharge and Rahul Gandhi at the Congress president’s official residence. A road map for cementing opposition unity and a possible meeting of opposition leaders in Patna was discussed in Monday’s meeting, sources said.

Congress general secretary (organisation) KC Venugopal and JD(U) chief Lalan Singh were also present at the meeting. The meeting with Congress leaders came a day after Nitish Kumar and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal called for Opposition unity to take on the BJP.

The JD(U) leader met the AAP CM at his residence in New Delhi and extended “complete support” to him in the ongoing tussle with the Centre over the control of administrative services.

Opposition unity was also visible during the swearing-in ceremony of Siddaramaiah as the Karnataka chief minister on Saturday.

Bihar CM Nitish Kumar, Deputy Chief Minister Tejashwi Yadav, Jharkhand CM Hemant Soren, Nationalist Congress Party president Sharad Pawar, Tamil Nadu CM M K Stalin and National Conference president Farooq Abdullah attended the swearing-in ceremony.

Nitish Kumar has been meeting opposition and regional party leaders as part of his efforts to unite them ahead of the 2024 general election. But a cohesive opposition bloc is yet to take a concrete shape.

Late last month, Kumar had hinted that a meeting of opposition leaders might take place in Patna after the Karnataka assembly polls were over. He had said issues related to forging opposition unity were expected to be discussed at length at that meeting.

On Monday, things seemed to be moving towards that planned meeting of opposition leaders.

“An opposition party meeting will be held. We will decide the date in the next one-two days,” KC Venugopal said after the meeting of Nitish Kumar with the Congress leaders.

“A vast number of opposition parties will participate in the meeting,” Venugopal said on being asked about the strength of opposition parties that would be attending the Patna meeting.

BJP Bihar chief Samrat Choudhary dismissed Nitish Kumar’s efforts “picnic”.

“Nitish Kumar is doing nothing, but [going on a] picnic in the country,” Choudhary said.

(WITH PTI INPUTS)

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