West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Thursday said that a rally led by the Trinamool Congress in Kolkata on Saturday would sound the death knell for the Bharatiya Janata Party in this year’s Lok Sabha elections, PTI reported.
A host of Opposition leaders are expected to participate in the rally, which is being seen as an effort to unite them against the BJP. “The rally will sound the death knell for the BJP... obviously they [BJP] will not cross more than 125 seats,” Banerjee said.
The chief minister claimed regional parties would win more seats than the saffron party. “The federal parties, that is the regional parties, will be the deciding factor after the elections,” she added.
Banerjee, who visited the Brigade Parade grounds on Thursday to oversee preparations, said the rally would start at noon. “Several leaders will attend and everybody will speak more or less,” she said. “They will address the nation.”
Former Prime Minister HD Deve Gowda, Karnataka Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal are expected to address the rally, as are Opposition leaders Sharad Pawar, Akhilesh Yadav, Omar Abdullah, N Chandrababu Naidu, Tejashwi Yadav and MK Stalin. However, reports have said that Congress leaders Rahul and Sonia Gandhi are likely to skip the rally.
Although Bahujan Samaj Party President Mayawati will not attend the rally, senior party leader Satish Chandra Mishra will be in attendance. “This is a big thing for us,” Banerjee said, adding that senior Congress leaders Mallikarjun Kharge and Abhishek Manu Singhvi will also attend.
“Every political party has a vision... this will be a grand alliance of people,” she added.