Will take steps at right time to fulfil public desire not to be ruled by BJP: Kharge after oppn meet

New Delhi, Jun 5 (PTI) INDIA bloc partners will take appropriate steps at the appropriate time to realise the people’s desire not to be ruled by the BJP government, Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge said on Wednesday following the opposition alliance’s first meeting after the Lok Sabha poll results.

Addressing the media after the nearly two-hour meeting which was seen as the alliance keeping its options open and not staking claim at government formation for now, he said the opposition leaders resolved to continue their fight against the “fascist rule” of the BJP led by Narendra Modi even as they thanked the people for their overwhelming support to the INDIA bloc.

“We will take appropriate steps at the appropriate time to realise people’s desire not to be ruled by the BJP’s government,” Kharge said while reading out a statement adopted by all the alliance constituents after the deliberations at his residence.

He said the decision has been taken by all constituents of the INDIA bloc in one voice.

The Congress president had convened the meeting to discuss the political situation and the election results, explore any possibility of government formation and whether to reach out to their old partners Nitish Kumar and Chandrababu Naidu.

He also said that the opposition would continue to work together and would definitely stand by the promises made to the people and keep them.

“The constituents of the INDIA bloc thank the people of India for their overwhelming support. The people’s mandate has been a befitting reply to the BJP and their politics of hate, corruption and deprivation,” Kharge said.

“This is a mandate in defence of the Constitution of India, and against price rise, unemployment and crony capitalism and also to save democracy,” Kharge added while announcing the decision of the alliance partners.

While the BJP won 240 seats and the Congress emerged as the second largest party with 99 seats, the NDA has the majority number with 293 seats and is holding a parallel meeting on government formation. The opposition alliance has 234 seats.

While the BJP on its own fell short of a majority, it may, as things stand, form the government on the back of its allies. With support from Naidu’s TDP and Nitish Kumar’s JD(U), which won 16 and 12 seats in Andhra Pradesh and Bihar, respectively, and other alliance partners, the NDA has crossed the halfway mark.

The TDP and JDU have already dismissed suggestions of defecting to the opposition alliance and have clearly stated that they will remain with the NDA. Sources, however, said the Congress and some other party leaders are already trying to woo them and have been in touch.

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