Kapil Sibal, one of the members of G-23, and the signer of the (in)famous letter written by some Congress leaders to the opposition leaders on the occasion of his birthday recently, demanding sweeping changes in the party organisation. Dinner organized.
Out of the 23 leaders of G-23, 20 leaders like Ghulam Nabi Azad, Anand Sharma, Manish Tewari, Shashi Tharoor, Vivek Tankha and P. Chidambaram were present at the event along with some other senior Congressmen. However, the Gandhians were conspicuously absent.
Kapil Sibal’s dinner diplomacy was a huge hit with more parties and who were present in the opposition. Parties like AAP, TDP, YSRCP, TRS, BJD, Akali Dal, RLD were also present which were not present during the breakfast meeting called by Rahul Gandhi, which brought some cheer to the rebels. The BSP only continued to miss the meetings, bolstering the opposition’s charge that it was the B-team of the BJP.
Leaders who attended the dinner included Nationalist Congress Party chief Sharad Pawar, Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) patriarch Lalu Yadav, Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav, CPI(M)’s Sitaram Yechury, CPI’s D. Raja, National’s Omar Abdullah. . The convention, Sanjay Raut of Shiv Sena, Pinaki Mishra of Biju Janata Dal, Derek O’Brien of Trinamool Congress, Tiruchi Shiv of DMK and Naresh Gujral of Akali Dal.
Parties that are alleged to be supporters of BJP like KCR’s TRS, Naveen Patnaik’s BJD and Jagan Reddy’s YSRCP were also present.
Opposition leaders spoke of the need to fight the BJP and the Narendra Modi government together. He felt that a start should be made in the Uttar Pradesh assembly elections, where a victory could keep the opposition’s momentum going after a victory in West Bengal.
Sources said several opposition leaders highlighted the fact that the Congress party needs to first solve its “internal problems”, with some leaders suggesting that this can happen only if the party is “free from the clutches of the Gandhi leadership”. ” Ho.
There are about 200 such seats in the Lok Sabha where there is a direct contest between the BJP and the Congress. In the 2014 and 2019 general elections, the BJP had won almost 90% of such seats.
Naresh Gujral of the Akali Dal, which has recently severed ties with the BJP, launched a direct attack on the Gandhi family, saying, “It will be very difficult to strengthen the party unless the party comes out of the clutches of the family. “
Omar Abdullah said, “It is great to bring the opposition together, but unless the Congress gets 120 seats in Parliament, at least, we will not be able to make a choice [for the BJP].”
Sharad Pawar proposed the Maharashtra model where Congress, NCP, Shiv Sena have come together despite their contradictions.
The meeting has created quite a stir in the political circles. Kapil Sibal later said in an interview to India Today that it has been a year since he wrote the letter but no progress has been made.