In a development highlighting growing fissures within the INDI alliance, Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and Samajwadi Party (SP) leader Akhilesh Yadav have opted to skip the INDIA bloc meeting convened by the Congress, as per reports by NDTV.
This decision marks a setback for the opposition's efforts to present a united front ahead of the 2024 Lok Sabha elections.
Representing the Janata Dal (United), Rajiv Ranjan and senior leader Sanjay Jha will attend the meeting on behalf of Nitish Kumar.
On the other hand, the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD), the other half of the Bihar government, is likely to be represented by party patriarch Lalu Prasad Yadav and his son Tejashwi Yadav, the Bihar Deputy Chief Minister.
Akhilesh Yadav, former Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, is expected to send his uncle, Ramgopal Yadav, as his representative to the meeting.
Reports suggest that Akhilesh Yadav, engaged in recent disputes with the Congress, seeks a personal invitation from top Congress leaders, sparking speculation about a potential rift within the opposition bloc.
The absence of key leaders also raises questions about the cohesion of the opposition ahead of crucial elections, particularly after the Congress' disappointing performance in the recent Assembly elections in Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, and Chhattisgarh.
The opposition's ability to present a united front in the face of political challenges remains uncertain, casting shadows on the prospects of a formidable alliance leading up to 2024.
Nayan Dwivedi is Staff Writer at Swarajya.
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