Sonia, Rahul Gandhi and Mayawati to skip Mamata Banerjee's Mahagathbandhan meet on January 19

Written By: Pooja Mehta WION
New Delhi, Delhi, India Updated: Jan 15, 2019, 08:50 PM(IST)

File photo of West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee. Photograph:( WION Web Team )

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According to TMC sources, a personal invite was extended to UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi. Congress President Rahul Gandhi was also invited. 

Putting all speculations to rest, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee confirmed on Tuesday that Congress will be represented by its senior leader Mallikarjun Kharge in the 'Mahagathbandhan' rally to be held on January 19 at the Brigade Parade Grounds in Kolkata. 

"We had extended invites to all leaders and we have been told that senior leader Mallikarjun Kharge will be attending," Banerjee said while leaving Nabanna - the state secretariat. 

According to TMC sources, a personal invite was extended to UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi. Congress President Rahul Gandhi was also invited. 

Congress insiders said that the high command was miffed with Banerjee as she skipped the swearing-in ceremonies of Congress chief ministers in the recently concluded assembly elections. Banerjee had sent party leaders to represent Trinamool Congress at the events instead. 

Sources in the Trinamool Congress said that even Mayawati is to skip the meeting. However, it is yet to be known whether she will be sending a representative from her party. 

On the other hand, Banerjee confirmed the names of twenty opposition leaders that are to attend the Brigade Parade Grounds rally. 

The leaders include HD Deve Gowda, HD Kumaraswamy, Arvind Kejriwal, Akhilesh Yadav, Tejaswi Yadav, Sharad Pawar, Badrudding Ajmal, MK Stalin, Arun Shorie, Chandrababu Naidu, Ajit Singh, Jayant Choudhary, Farooq Abdullah, Omar Abdullah, Shatrughan Sinha, Babulal Marandi, Mallikarjun Kharge, Jignesh Mevani, Hardik Patel and Yashwant Sinha. 

The meeting is being seen as the next major congregation of opposition leaders ahead of the 2019 Lok Sabha elections. 

Today, a high-level meeting was held at the state secretariat - Nabanna to discuss the itinerary and security arrangements of the upcoming Brigade rally. The meeting was chaired by CM Banerjee and most senior leaders from the Trinamool Congress. Senior officials from the administration were also present at the meeting. 

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