Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on February 18, 2023 announced that BJP would go below 100 seats if Congress listens to him. Mr. Kumar asked Congress leadership to make the formal announcement of Opposition unity as soon as possible to take on Prime Minister Narendra Modi in upcoming Lok Sabha polls.
Mr. Kumar said this during the third day of the national convention of CPI(ML) in which leaders of other political parties were also present including senior Congress leader and former Union Minister Salman Kurshid.
“As you (Salman Khurshid) are here I would like to send a message to your leadership to make a decision as soon as possible. Call the meeting and take the decision where and with whom you want to contest the Lok Sabha poll. If you listen to my suggestion, BJP will go below 100 seats and if you will not listen then you do whatever you want to. Take the decision as soon as possible, I am waiting and take my words, the country will get the benefit and even you will get the benefit of it,” Mr. Kumar said while looking at Mr. Khurshid.
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Mr. Kumar added that all the Opposition parties will have to come together in the coming Lok Sabha polls to defeat BJP. He stressed that Bharat Jodo Yatra went well but it’s time to think ahead.
“I am getting the call from other political parties and they are asking to call a meeting of all the opposition parties but I am just waiting. I want to unite as many political parties as possible. I am repeatedly saying and again I want to say that I don’t have any wish. I just want to save the country and make India BJP free,” Mr. Kumar asserted.
Deputy Chief Minister Tejashwi Yadav, Janata Dal (United) national president Rajiv Ranjan Singh alias Lalan Singh, CPI(ML) general secretary Dipankar Bhattacharya and member of Parliament and leader of Viduthalai Chiruthaigal Katchi (Liberation Panthers Party, Tamil Nadu) Thol. Thirumavalavan were also present on the dais.
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Mr. Kumar while addressing the gathering said that the current regime is working in its own interest and now time has come to think beyond Bihar in light of the 2024 election. Ever since Mr. Kumar has snapped ties with BJP last year, he has been working on uniting the opposition and even declared that after the budget session of the state, he will go for a nationwide tour to unite opposition.
Mr. Khurshid tactically handled the situation and assured Mr. Kumar that Congress party is also willing to unite the opposition and it’s just a matter of who will say I love you first?
“As far as I know my party, Congress, wants the same thing that you want. However, there is always a problem in love and Tejashwi ji knows it very well. Who will say I love you first. Whenever everyone sits together, all the decisions would be made. I heard Nitish ji said that he is ready but an announcement should be made. I must say that I will pass on your message to our leadership. As an advocate, I will do advocacy as well on this front. It is a very good proposal and it will happen soon. Once the announcement would be made the entire scenario in the country would be changed, “ Mr. Khurshid said.
Mr. Tejashwi on other hand opined that in places where regional parties are strong, they should be given the driving seat and where there is two-sided fight between the Congress and BJP, they will support Congress.
At the end of the speech, all the leaders joined their hands together to show unity among the opposition parties.