Will work together to defeat BJP: Rahul Gandhi after meeting TDP chief Naidu

New Delhi, Delhi, IndiaUpdated: Nov 01, 2018, 09:45 PM IST

Congress President Rahul Gandhi along with Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu addresses the media outside his residence at Tughlak Road in New Delhi. Photograph:(PTI)

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Naidu is trying to unite opposition parties to take on the saffron party in the Lok Sabha elections next year.

Opposition parties will work together to defeat the BJP to defend India, its institutions and the democracy, Congress president Rahul Gandhi Thursday said after meeting the TDP chief N Chandrababu Naidu.

Naidu is trying to unite opposition parties to take on the saffron party in the Lok Sabha elections next year.

Gandhi in the presence of Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Naidu said both of them have decided "not to get into the past" but talk about the present and the future as it is "critical" for the country.

The TDP had earlier criticised the Congress on the bifurcation of the state. 

Asserting that there is a need to save the nation and the democracy, Naidu said he discussed this will the Congress president and they have agreed to it in-principle.

Gandhi tweeted,"I had a good meeting today with Shri Chandrababu Naidu. Amongst other things, we discussed the issue of opposition unity. I look forward to carrying forward our dialogue and to working together in the upcoming state & general elections".

Before that, he told reporters, "We are working together, we are going to work together. All Opposition forces are going to work together to defend India, our institutions and our democracy.

"We have had a past. Both of us have agreed we are not going to get into the past. We are going to talk about the present and future because it is critical for our country," Gandhi told reporters.

He said because of the situation in the country, "let all opposition forces come together and provide a vision."

Asked who is going to be the face for an Opposition alliance, Gandhi said both the leaders have agreed that the principle idea is to defeat the BJP and defend democracy and institutions of this country. "All other ideas, we will discuss later," he said, adding,"Everyone is going to work together".

He further said, "Your interest is in sensationalism but we have to work together to deliver people's aspirations."

He said the primary challenge before all the opposition forces is to work together and defend India's institutions and democracy.

"Everything else is secondary. We will do what is our primary challenge," he said. 

On the Rafale deal, the Congress chief said "it is very clear that corruption has taken place and there is no doubt in it."

"Institutions that are investigating the Rafale deal are attacked and threatened. That is what exactly we are defending," he said.

"If there is proper enquiry, it will become very clear exactly what happened, where money went and who did the corruption. Something that I am pushing aggressively because I believe nation needs to know,. This sentiment is shared by all Opposition parties," he added.

Naidu's meeting with Gandhi comes amid seat-sharing talks between the two parties for the December 7 Assembly elections in Telangana.

Earlier in the day, Naidu met NCP chief Sharad Pawar and National Conference president Farooq Abdullah here.

Naidu asserted that there is a need today to save this nation and democracy. "That's why I discussed with Rahulji also. In-principally we have agreed," he said.

"Some of you have doubt about our past. It is a democratic compulsion now, we are joining together to protect this country.

"The main opposition leaders has responsibility to discharge. That's why we are joining together. Not only two parties, those opposing BJP we want to bring them to a common platform. We want to chalk out a common programme for future," he said.

The TDP chief claimed he never had seen this type of attack on institutions like CBI, RBI, ED and IT in his political career of 40 years.

"I have asked Rahulji to discuss in the party and proposed all political meeting to chalk out a programme for future," he said.

Asked about face of an alliance, Naidu said, "you are interested in candidate, we are interested in the nation. Remove that in your mind. You also think first about the nation."

"It is a reality you have to understand that Congress is a main opposition party. All other parties are necessary. So, we will work on these things. Our main motive is save nation," he added.