Let's all unite to dethrone Modi...Mamata, Naidu meet, discuss 'Oust Modi' plan

Kolkata, May 20: Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu and his West Bengal counterpart Mamata Banerjee met here on Monday and discussed the prospects of the post-poll alliance of the opposition parties against the BJP, sources said. The two discussed formation of  a non-BJP government at the Centre in case of a hung verdict, TMC sources added. 

However, neither of them talked to the media following the around 45-minute-long meeting that was held at Banerjee's residence in south Kolkata's Kalighat.

On his arrival, Naidu was welcomed by Banerjee's nephew and Trinamool Congress MP Abhishek Banerjee and Kolkata Mayor Firhad Hakim.

According to the sources, the two leaders discussed the importance of uniting all the anti-BJP parties under one umbrella and constituting a common minimum agenda.

Naidu also briefed Banerjee regarding his meetings with Congress President Rahul Gandhi, UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi, Nationalist Congress Party chief Sharad Pawar and Communist Party of India-Marxist General Secretary Sitaram Yechury on Sunday, sources said.

On Sunday night, Naidu rubbished the exit polls, saying such predictions have "time and again" failed to catch the pulse of the people.

"While undoubtedly TDP govt will be formed in AP, we are confident that non-BJP parties will form a non-BJP govt at the center (sic)," Naidu had tweeted.

Banerjee also slammed the exit polls, calling them "gossip".

"I don't trust Exit Poll gossip. The game plan is to manipulate or replace thousands of EVMs through this gossip. I appeal to all Opposition parties to be united, strong and bold. We will fight this battle together," she had tweeted.

Even as the exit polls predicted a majority for the ruling NDA in the Lok Sabha elections, the Opposition camp is convinced that the BJP-led coalition will fall short of numbers, due to which they are making an effort to cobble up an alternative.

Ahead of the declaration of actual results on May 23, Naidu has been reaching out to various non-BJP parties as part of efforts to stitch up a coalition that could form a government at the Centre if the NDA fails to cross the majority mark of 272 seats in the 543-member Lok Sabha.

Earlier, he had met UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi, Congress President Rahul Gandhi, NCP chief Sharad Pawar, CPI-M leader Sitaram Yechury, SP President Akhilesh Yadav, BSP chief Mayawati and CPI's Sudhakar Reddy and D. Raja over the last few days.

A leader of the Opposition camp said the meetings that Naidu is holding with various Opposition leaders were "informal consultations" to assess the situation.

IANS

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