West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee arrived in New Delhi on Monday night and met with NCP chief Sharad Pawar and some opposition leaders from different political parties on Tuesday. Banerjee is scheduled to attend a dinner today hosted by Pawar, where discussions regarding forging an anti-BJP front is to take shape ahead of the crucial 2019 Lok Sabha elections. The TMC supremo is also likely to call on UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi and it remains to be seen if the visit serves as an ice-breaker between the two parties, especially after Banerjee skipped the dinner that was hosted by the UPA chief earlier this month.
While speaking to the media today, Banerjee accused the BJP-led NDA government of “using and misusing” all agencies, including the Election Commission. While speaking to media on the issue of the leaked dates of the Karnataka polls, the chief minister lashed out at the ruling party and said all institutions were being transformed into “BJP institutions”. “All agencies are being used and misused. All institutions are becoming BJP institutions,” Banerjee told reporters here.
Pawar has called a meeting of all Opposition leaders, including those from the Congress, to discuss the strategy for the 2019 Lok Sabha elections. This is expected to be the second biggest gathering after Sonia Gandhi’s dinner earlier this month, which was attended by 19 parties, including the CPI(M), NCP and Samajwadi Party. For that dinner, Banerjee had sent Sudip Bandopadhyay, citing personal work.