Nationalist Congress Party President Sharad Pawar on Wednesday said “anti-BJP sentiments” are rising and the people need an alternative which “stays in the country”, PTI reported.

His comments were apparently addressed to Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, who on Tuesday said he had met South Korea Prime Minister Lee Nak-yon during a visit to the country.

Responding to a question in Nagpur on whether the country has potential for a national front against the Bharatiya Janata Party, the NCP chief said: “There are some indications that anti-BJP sentiments are on the rise in some parts of the country. People need an alternative for such change, and such the alternative has to be staying in the country”.

Gandhi’s visit to South Korea came amid nationwide protests against the amended Citizenship Act. He said all political parties have met President Ram Nath Kovind to protest against the citizenship law. “It looks like non-BJP parties are coming together on some common issues,” Pawar added.

He said the Opposition need more time to form a more “organised structure” to counter the Narendra Modi-led government. Pawar said the demonstrations against the Citizenship Amendment Act would remain confined to certain states.

The Centre did not expect the protests that erupted across the country, the NCP leader said.

Large gatherings have been banned in Delhi’s Red Fort, Uttar Pradesh and Karnataka on Thursday. Several metro stations have been closed and barricades placed on the city borders. Reports said several protestors have been detained.