Ahead of the highly anticipated gathering of the INDIA alliance, leaders from the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) coalition took to the media stage in Mumbai to outline their objectives and vision. The press briefing illuminated several crucial subjects, encompassing the reduction in prices of LPG gas, the imminent INDIA alliance meeting, and their overarching agenda.
Addressing the press, Sanjay Raut, the spokesperson of Shiv Sena (UBT), highlighted the profound impact of the INDIA alliance. He credited the coalition’s joint endeavors for the recent Rs 200 decrease in LPG gas prices, emphasizing that this collaborative move directly resulted from the unity demonstrated by the alliance’s members.
Raut also referred to a metaphorical remark by Lalu Prasad Yadav, where Yadav spoke of figuratively sitting on “Modi’s neck.” Raut clarified that this sentiment was not a personal attack but a collective stance against what they perceived as a dictatorial approach.
Envisaging the outcomes of the INDIA alliance’s initiatives, Raut asserted that as the alliance progressed, regions like Ladakh and Arunachal Pradesh would witness China’s withdrawal, implying that the unity of the coalition would yield positive effects.
Underscoring the significance of the forthcoming INDIA alliance meeting, Raut noted that all parties that participated in the Patna conference would also be present. He pointed out that Chief Ministers from six states and senior leaders of various INDIA parties were slated to attend the event in Mumbai.
Ashok Chavan, former Chief Minister of Maharashtra and senior Congress leader, shed light on the meeting’s planning. He highlighted the rise in participating parties from 26 to 28, indicative of growing support. Chavan also expressed pride in Maharashtra’s contributions to the nation’s advancement and satisfaction that the meeting was hosted in Mumbai.
Chavan underscored the collective potency of all INDIA parties, noting that in the 2019 elections, these parties secured over 23 crore votes, surpassing the BJP’s 22 crore votes. He attributed the BJP’s victory to a fragmented opposition and emphasized the alliance’s positive developmental agenda.
Sharad Pawar, the leader of the NCP, affirmed that the INDIA alliance aimed to establish an alternative platform for the nation’s transformation and development.
Uddhav Thackeray, Chief of Shiv Sena (UBT), launched a scathing critique against the Central government for its decision to reduce gas prices on Raksha Bandhan. Thackeray commented, “Have they forgotten about their sisters for the past nine years? Suddenly, they decide to cut prices. The motive behind this gas price reduction is that the government itself is running out of gas. Ye public hai sab janti hai (The public knows everything).”
Thackeray also criticized the BJP’s recent call for Muslim women to tie rakhis and suggested that if they genuinely wanted to honor women, they should start with figures like Bilkis Bano and the mistreated Manipur women.
Addressing inquiries about Mayawati’s absence from the alliance, Sharad Pawar clarified that her position remained uncertain, given her past dialogues with the BJP. He noted that her inclusion in the INDIA alliance would hinge on her ultimate decision.
Responding to speculations about the prime ministerial candidate for the INDIA alliance, Thackeray humorously stated that the alliance boasted numerous potential candidates, questioning whether the BJP had any other viable choices besides PM Modi.
The press conference also tackled internal issues, including divisions within parties. Pawar assured that those who had left the party would find their place in the electorate’s choices. In a lighter vein, Thackeray referenced Shiv Sena’s candid criticism of their alliance partners, humorously acknowledging that critiquing allies was a shared trait and sharing a Shiv Sena-BJP anecdote.