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Mamata, KCR move to form federal front

Joining hands: Mamata Banerjee and K. Chandrashekar Rao speaking to journalists in Kolkata on Monday.

Joining hands: Mamata Banerjee and K. Chandrashekar Rao speaking to journalists in Kolkata on Monday.   | Photo Credit: PTI

Promises “alternative agenda, development, political force”

Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrashekar Rao met West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee at the State Secretariat here on Monday. Both leaders later said the meeting had initiated the process of forming a ‘federal front’ for the 2019 Lok Sabha polls.

While Mr. Rao was clear that the ‘front’ would be a platform of non-Bharatiya Janata Party and non-Congress parties, Ms. Banerjee avoided a direct answer to the question and remained non-committal about leaving the Congress out. They did not give the name of the front.

Emphasising the need for an “alternative agenda, an alternative development and an alternative political force” in the country, the Chief Minister of Telangana said the “routine kind of administration” as performed by both the Congress and the BJP had not worked well for the country.

 

Preliminary meeting

“We are trying to bring in a real federal front for the country. This will be a like-minded group of political leaders. Today is just the beginning. Most of the things, we will make clear when other leaders sit together and discuss,” Mr. Rao said after the meeting with Ms. Banerjee, which lasted around two hours.

Describing the meeting as a “good beginning”, the West Bengal Chief Minister said that there is a need for the Federal Front because “if the States are strong, the nation will be strong.”

“We have started the dialogue. Let us approach other political parties,” Ms Bnerjee said, adding that sometimes situations arise in politics where many political parties have to come together.

She, however, said that there is “no hurry” and such bigger political initiatives require time.

On BJP, Congress

Referring to the BJP, Ms Banerjee said the political party which rules the country “must not feel proud” and think that “they will rule the country as they feel like”. Asked about the Congress seeking cooperation of all like-minded parties to take on the BJP, Ms Banerjee said all parties are entitled to have their own opinion.

“Whatever Mr Rao ( K. Chandrasekhar Rao) has said I fully agree with. He has expressed his views, what is the harm? Rahul also expressed his views yesterday. He never asked us. So, they can say their views and we can say our views,” she added.

On the question of who would lead the proposed Front. Mr. Rao said it would be a “collective and federal leadership”.

“Leaders always emerge from out of situations…. The nation has to change, it has to take a big jump,” he said.

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Printable version | Jul 2, 2020 6:39:53 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/mamata-kcr-meet-kicks-off-federal-front-process/article23295989.ece

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