Senior Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge on Sunday said all Opposition parties should unite against the BJP to relieve people of its “oppression” and asserted that the party had approached BSP chief Mayawati to lead the coalition in U.P., but never heard back.
Mr. Kharge seconded Rahul Gandhi’s statement made a day before according to which he had approached Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) chief Mayawati for a coalition and even made her an offer to be the chief ministerial candidate, but she never responded.
"People are today suffering due to inflation and price rise, there are no jobs and the RSS is capturing all constitutional institutions and in such a situation what will happen to our democracy and who will protect Babasaheb's Constitution.
"In this battle against the BJP all Opposition parties should unite see the BJP out to ensure that people can get some relief," Mr. Kharge said.
He also said that in Uttar Pradesh, the Congress should unite with BSP and together oust the BJP from the State, to put an end to "atrocities" against people being committed by the BJP in its “arrogance of power”.
He claimed that the women, Dalits, minorities and the oppressed are the most affected due to this "oppression" by the ruling party.
"The Congress made many efforts and in this regard the Congress party had urged Mayawati ji to come along with the Congress and lead the coalition against the BJP. But she did not do so, whatever be the reason. The same thing was repeated by Rahul Gandhi yesterday," the Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha said.
Rejecting Mr. Gandhi's claim, Ms. Mayawati asked the Congress leader to get his own house in order instead of worrying about other parties.
Hitting back at Mr. Gandhi, Ms. Mayawati said all the allegations levelled by him are wrong and reflect his party's “casteist mindset” and feeling of malice.
"Yesterday, the former president of the Congress had made some remarks regarding our party and especially about its chief, which clearly reflect the casteist mindset and a feeling of malice towards the Bahujan Samaj Party. It also shows similar feelings towards deprived sections of the society, especially the Dalits," she told reporters here.
"Before levelling any allegation on the BSP, Rahul Gandhi must introspect," she said.