News anchors, seat-sharing, caste census: What INDIA parties discussed at panel meet
The INDIA bloc of opposition parties plans to hold talks on seat-sharing and hold its first public meeting in Bhopal in October.
The INDIA bloc comprising over two dozen opposition parties will soon hold talks regarding seat-sharing and will hold its first public meeting in Bhopal in the first week of October, Congress general secretary KC Venugopal said on Wednesday after a meeting of its coordination committee.
“The coordination committee decided to start the process for determining seat sharing. It was decided that the member parties will hold the talks and decide at the earliest,” a joint statement by the committee read.
“The first public meeting will be held at Bhopal in the first week of October on the issues of rising prices, unemployment and corruption of the BJP government,” it added.
For seat sharing, state-level committees will be formed to hold discussions with INDIA parties in that state.
Twelve member parties present at the meeting held at Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) president Sharad Pawar's Delhi residence agreed to take up the issue of caste census. The panel also authorised the sub-committee on media to decide upon the names of television news anchors on whose shows none of the INDIA parties will send their representatives.
"All alliance parties will participate in the public meeting (to be held in Bhopal) and raise issues of price rise, unemployment and corruption. There was also consensus over the caste census. We have also authorised our media committee to release the list of TV anchors on whose shows leaders of our alliance parties won't participate," AAP leader Raghav Chadha said.
National Conference leader Omar Abdullah, who attended the meeting, said his suggestion was not to discuss seats already held by alliance members and focus on the seats held by NDA parties.
"One of things I had proposed is that the seats that are already held by members of the INDIA block should not be open for discussion, we should be discussing the seats held by the BJP, NDA or parties that are not part of either of those alliances..."
Indian National Developmental Inclusive Alliance (INDIA) in its third meeting in Mumbai announced a 14-member coordination committee.
The 14-member committee includes KC Venugopal (Congress), Sharad Pawar (NCP), TR Baalu (DMK), Hemant Soren (JMM), Sanjay Raut (SS), Tejasvi Yadav (RJD), Abhishek Banerjee (TMC), Raghav Chaddha (AAP), Javed Ali Khan (SP), Lallan Singh (JD(U)), D Raja (CPI), Omar Abdullah (NC), Mehbooba Mufti (PDP).
Venugopal said that Trinamool Congress leader Abhishek Banerjee couldn't attend the meeting due to a summon by the Enforcement Directorate.
BJP terms it ‘anti-Hindu meet’
The BJP on Wednesday slammed the INDIA bloc meeting as a get-together of "anti-Hindu coordination committee" and cited corruption cases against their leaders, as it kept the heat on the opposition over a slew of issues including remarks on the Sanatan Dharma.
"The INDIA alliance meeting is taking place to abolish Hindus, which is evident from what a Tamil Nadu minister had said," Union minister Giriraj Singh told reporters, referring to DMK leader Udhayanidhi Stalin's recent remarks on Sanatan Dharma that triggered a major political controversy.