TRS to stay away from opposition meeting on Presidential polls

Hyderabad, June 15: Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) has decided not to attend the meeting called by West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Wednesday to discuss the opposition’s strategy for the Presidential election in New Delhi.

Telangana Chief Minister and TRS president K. Chandrasekhar Rao took the decision after consultations with senior party leaders.

The TRS is unhappy with Mamata Banerjee inviting Congress party for the meeting. The TRS cited its stand to maintain equidistance from both the BJP and the Congress. The TRS leadership made it clear that it can’t be a part of any exercise which has the participation of the Congress.

Trinamool Congress leader Mamata Banerjee has invited all the opposition parties for the meeting to be held at Constitution Club at 3 p.m. She also extended the invitation to eight chief ministers of opposition-ruled states for the meeting.

It initially thought that TRS chief KCR may stay away from the meeting but he may send some other TRS leader. However, after hours of consultation with party leaders he decided not to send any TRS leader.

The TRS sources claimed that KCR already conveyed to Matama Banerjee his objections to the invitation extended to the Congress party.

KCR-led party made it clear that since Congress is its main rival in the state, it can’t share a platform with it. The party leader was also unhappy over the way Congress leader Rahul Gandhi during his visit to the state last month made baseless allegations against TRS government without speaking anything against the BJP.

There is also a feeling among the TRS leadership that the Congress party can’t be trusted. They believe that Congress party colluded with the BJP in all elections from 2019 Lok Sabha polls to Assembly by-election in Huzurabad late last year. It alleged that the Congress worked for the victory of BJP by sacrificing its own chances.

The TRS leaders also questioned the purpose of calling a meeting when a candidate was already selected. They are of the view that the opposition parties should have first discussed a leader acceptable to all parties in advance and then convince such a leader later.

They were referring to Mamata Banerjee’s request to Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader Sharad Pawar to be the opposition candidate. The NCP chief has declined the offer saying he wants to remain in active politics.

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