New Delhi: The Opposition will not have a prime ministerial face before the results of the 2019 Lok Sabha Elections are announced, said the news agency ANI quoting sources. The news comes as a boost to the Bharatiya Janata Party and Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who will be seeking a re-election next year. A faceless Opposition will be easy to counter for PM Modi as he will seek to return to power on the five-year track record of his government.
The news came along with sources-based inputs that the main opposition Congress party will seek to form a strategic alliance in the politically-crucial Uttar Pradesh ahead of General Elections next year. ANI reported that the Congress will not ally with Shiv Sena, which is currently part of the ruling National Democratic Alliance but the relationship has not been an easy one. Sources said the Congress-Shiv Sena alliance has no future as their ideologies are completely different.
It is also being reported that the Congress will not announce CM candidates for Assembly Elections due in Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and Rajasthan later this year. Further, while Congress president Rahul Gandhi will contest elections from his Amethi constituency, the party was yet to decide whether his mother Sonia Gandhi or sister Priyanka will fight elections from Rae Bareilly. Sonia Gandhi has not been keeping well for quite some time and speculation is that Priyanka might take the much-awaited political plunge in 2019 national polls.
The developments came just two days after West Bengal Chief Minister and Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee visited Delhi on Wednesday to rally opposition parties for a united front in 2019 Lok Sabha elections. Mamata met the Gandhis at 10, Janpath and declared that her priority would be to defeat the BJP in the 2019 contest. She had also stated that the question as to who will be the prime ministerial candidate of a united opposition front will be settled collectively later.
The TMC chief is holding a mega rally in Kolkata on January 19 as a show of her strength and has invited almost all opposition leaders to attend it. Sources said the Kolkata rally will be used by Mamata as a pitch to emerge as the pivot of opposition efforts to dislodge the Narendra Modi government in 2019 Lok Sabha polls.
“There will be collective face. Ours is a collective family. Priority is to defeat BJP. If, to defeat BJP, we can fight collectively inside Parliament then why can we not outside?” she had said after meeting Sonia and Rahul Gandhi. The TMC supremo also met leaders of various parties including Shiv Sena, AIADMK, Samajwadi Party, TDP, YSCRP, DMK, RJD, Kerala Congress-Mani and Aam Aadmi Party.