The Nationalist Congress Party on Friday skipped an Opposition meeting called by Congress President Sonia Gandhi, reported ANI. This comes after the Congress hinted that the Sharad Pawar-led party, which had an alliance with the Congress for the 2012 Gujarat Assembly polls, had betrayed it in the Rajya Sabha elections in the state.
There were reports that two of the NCP MLAs might have voted for the Bharatiya Janata Party during the Rajya Sabha elections on August 8, and not for Congress candidate Ahmed Patel.
Senior NCP leader Praful Patel, on the other hand, said they skipped the meeting because of Congress’ lack of trust. “If the Congress is publicly attacking the NCP despite the party’s support in Gujarat’s Rajya Sabha polls, why should we come for the meeting?” Patel told India Today. Unidentified party members also added that the NCP was angry with the Congress after it questioned its integrity.
The joint meeting was reportedly called to discuss unity, and form a strategy against the Narendra Modi-led Central government. However, Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad said the “agenda was to thank the presidential and vice-presidential candidates of the Opposition parties,” reported ANI.
The Congress president had also invited Janata Dal (United) leader Sharad Yadav to attend the meeting. However, there was no confirmation if Yadav, who had said he was upset about Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar’s decision to ally with the BJP, attended the meeting. But, JD(U) MP Ali Anwar was later suspended after he attended the meeting, JD(U) General Secretary KC Tyagi told ANI.