Chandrababu Naidu meets Rahul Gandhi amid buzz around declaration of Opposition’s PM face on May 21

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Published: May 8, 2019 11:52:33 AM

Several opposition leaders including NCP supremo Sharad Pawar have also said that opposition parties are on the same page and that they will come together after the results.

Chandrababu Naidu, Rahul Gandhi, Opposition Prime MinisterAndhra Pradesh Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu met Congress president Rahul Gandhi at his residence in Delhi on Wednesday morning. (File Photo. PTI)

Lok Sabha election results 2019: Telugu Desam Party chief and Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu met Congress president Rahul Gandhi at the latter’s residence in Delhi on Wednesday morning and is believed to have discussed a possible alliance between the non-NDA parties and the Congress post declaration of the Lok Sabha election results on May 23. The meeting, which lasted around 10 minutes, comes days after Naidu, who is playing the role of a facilitator to unite all the non-BJP parties, announced that all the opposition parties will meet on May 21 to reach a consensus on their Prime Ministerial face. Results of the Lok Sabha elections will be declared on May 23.

Opposition parties have so far failed to arrive at a consensus on their PM candidate. While efforts to stitch together a united alliance ahead of polls found few backers, Opposition parties also refrained from getting into detailed discussions around post-poll alliances and the prime ministerial face. Addressing the media, Naidu had said that it is a democratic compulsion to unseat Prime Minister Narendra Modi. “Opposition parties will sit together after the election and discuss who will be the Prime Minister. I am not an aspirant,” he had said. Naidu is expected to travel to West Bengal next where he will meet Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee.

Earlier in February, the opposition parties had met to discuss the probability of contesting elections in an agreement to take on the BJP and assigned Rahul Gandhi to prepare a common minimum programme for the alliance. However, this yielded no results and parties contested elections against each other in many states.

Naidu’s TDP had pulled out of the Modi government in 2018, accusing Prime Minister Narendra Modi of not fulfilling the special status promise made to the people of Andhra Pradesh in 2014. Since then, Naidu has been criticising the BJP and advocating an alliance of the opposition parties to unseat the BJP.

Several opposition leaders including NCP supremo Sharad Pawar have also said that opposition parties are on the same page and that they will come together after the results. While Naidu, DMK leader MK Stalin, Karnataka CM HD Kumaraswamy and RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav have openly backed Rahul Gandhi’s candidature for the Prime Minister’s job, reservation from West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav and BSP supremo Mayawati on his leadership have put the Congress on the back foot.

Recently, Mayawati at an election rally in Ambedkar Nagar dropped clear hints about her Prime Ministerial ambition saying that “if all goes well” she may have to contest the elections after the results. Hinting that he will support Mayawati’s candidature, Akhilesh Yadav said that he will be happy to extend support to a woman if she becomes the Prime Minister.

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