- Sanjay Raut said an oppn front is not possible without Congress
- The Shiv Sena leader met former Congress chief Rahul Gandhi
- Prior to his meeting with Rahul Gandhi, Sanjay Raut said MVA is ‘mini UPA’
Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut, who met former Congress chief Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday, said that an opposition front is not possible without the Congress party.
Speaking about united opposition to counter Modi government, Sanjay Raut said, “The face of the opposition front may be a matter of discussion. Rahul Gandhi will soon visit Mumbai. There should be only one opposition front.”
On being further asked about the meeting and whether Shiv Sena will join UPA, Raut said, “It was a long meeting (with Congress leader Rahul Gandhi), I will first meet Uddhav Thackery and then we’ll talk about it.”
Earlier in the day, prior to the meeting with Rahul Gandhi, Raut said declared that the “Maha Vikas Aghadi government is like a mini-United Progressive Alliance” which is doing well.
He said there has been a lot of media speculation whether the Sena is joining the UPA and if it would support the Congress in the upcoming Assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh, Goa and other states.
“The Congress is in power along with Sena and NCP in the MVA and the state government is doing very well. We function on the basis of a Common Minimum Programme, similar to the UPA or even the NDA where parties with different views come together for the national cause,” Raut pointed out.
He said in the National Democratic Alliance (NDA), during the leadership of the late Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee, there were many having ideological differences and some even opposing the Ram Temple in Ayodhya, but they all worked together.
“The MVA also has three parties with dissimilar views working on a common minimum programme. It is an experiment and the MVA is like a mini-UPA… Such experiments must be emulated elsewhere in the country,” Raut urged.
Whether the UPA or the Opposition parties, they should come forward and provide alternatives, and this is the viewpoint of both Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray as well as NCP President Sharad Pawar, he asserted.
Raut’s statements assume significance, coming barely a week after All India Trinamool Congress (AITC) chief and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had loudly hammered coffin-nails for the UPA following her meetings with Sena and Nationalist Congress Party leaders in Mumbai, while the Congress was kept out.
(With inputs from IANS)
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