19 Mar 2023

SP, TMC To Maintain Distance From Congress But Jairam Ramesh Says Coalition Of Regional Parties Cannot Take On BJP

New Delhi: While many leading Opposition parties like TMC, Samajwadi Party (SP) and AAP have maintained distance from Congress, senior Congress leader Jairam Ramesh has averred that an Opposition without the Congress cannot take on Bharatiya Janata Party. 

He said if an alliance is formed for the 2024 general elections, the Congress will have a pivotal role in it.

Ramesh's statement comes at a time when SP and TMC have joined hands to form a possible coalition and said they would not have any alliance with Congress.

TMC chief Mamata Banerjee and SP chief Akhilesh Yadav have said they would stay away from both the Congress and the BJP but indicated that they could ally with other regional players ahead of the 2024 Lok Sabha elections.

First priority for Congress is forthcoming assembly elections 

Ramesh, however, said it was too early to talk about the coalition right now as the first priority for the Congress was the forthcoming elections in Karnataka and other states this year.

Asked whether the TMC and SP's decision to keep Congress out could jolt Opposition unity, Ramesh said, "The TMC, Samajwadi people keep meeting, the third front, fourth front will continue to be formed, but it is necessary to have the Congress in the Opposition."

"If an Opposition coalition is formed, the Congress will play a key role in it. No front is possible without the Congress. But it is too early to talk about this," he added.

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