NEW DELHI: I-N-D-I-A or the Indian National Developmental Inclusive Alliance of the opposition parties that have come together to take on the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance in the 2024 Lok Sabha elections will have a 11-member coordination committee to decide on all important issues, including seat sharing and the PM face for the alliance.
At the second unity meeting in Bengaluru, the 26 opposition parties agreed to the new name of the alliance INDIA, which was proposed by Congress leader Rahul Gandhi. The opposition parties also agreed to a joint statement. The third meeting of the opposition alliance will be held in Mumbai.
“The fight now is between INDIA and NDA,” said Rahul Gandhi after the meeting. “The idea of India is being attacked by the ideology of the BJP,” he said and added, “This fight is not between 2 political formations but fight is to defend the idea of India. If you will see history, you will find that nobody has been able to fight the idea of India. It’s a fight between the idea of India and Narendra Modi.”
West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee said INDIA will defeat the BJP.
“It was a constructive and fruitful meeting and the real challenge starts today,” the TMC supremo said after the session.
On the new name of the opposition alliance, she said, “I want to ask BJP and NDA, can they challenge INDIA?”.
“26 parties have come together to save the country and to fight the hate campaign of the BJP,” said Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal. “In the last 9 years, PM Modi could have done a lot of things but he destroyed all the sectors. We have gathered here not for ourselves but to save the country from hatred,” Kejriwal said.
Shiv Sena (UBT) chief Uddhav Thackeray said that the country is now uniting against dictatorship. “The country is our family and we are fighting for it,” Thackeray said.
Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge, who hosted the meeting, took a dig at the NDA meeting scheduled for later today and claimed that Prime Minister Modi and BJP were intimidated by the unity of the opposition parties and were now trying to woo the regional parties.
“NDA is holding a meeting with 30 parties. I have not heard about so many parties in India. Earlier they didn’t hold any meetings but now they are meeting one by one (with NDA parties) PM Modi is now afraid of opposition parties. We have gathered here to save democracy and the Constitution,” Kharge said.
Asked who will be face of the alliance, Kharge said that the convenor and members of the coordination panel will be decided during the next meeting in Mumbai.
“Seat-sharing will be mutually discussed by all leaders and the coordination committee members,” he said.
In their ‘Samuhik Sankalp (joint resolution) released after the meeting, the parties expressed their steadfast resolve to safeguard the idea of India as enshrined in the Constitution.
“The character of our republic is being severely assaulted in a systematic manner by the BJP. We are at a most crucial juncture in our nation’s history. The foundational pillars of the Indian Constitution – secular democracy, economic sovereignty, social justice and federalism – are being methodically and menacingly undermined,” they alleged.
“We have come together to defeat the hatred and violence being manufactured against minorities; stop the rising crimes against women, Dalits, adivasis and Kashmiri Pandits; demand a fair hearing for all socially, educationally and economically backward communities; and, as a first step, implement the Caste Census,” the parties said in their resolution passed “in one voice” at the meeting.

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