Mamta Bannerjee brings together all opposition parties for a Mahagathbandhan

Kolkata: Trinamool supremo Mamta Bannerjee is holding a mega rally-called “United India Rally”, here at Parade Ground on Saturday. The mega rally’s prime motto is to bring together all national and regional party sans-BJP to bring forth a united front for the upcoming General Elections.

Congress President Rahul Gandhi and his mother Sonia Gandhi are giving the event a miss. But Congress chief personally wished Mamta Bannerjee aka ‘Didi’ for her initiative to unite India. Senior Congress leaders Mallikarjun Kharge and Abhishek Manu Singhvi will be a part of this grand event.

More than 20 national leaders, including three present chief ministers Arvind Kejriwal, Chandrababu Naidu and H D Kumaraswamy; and former chief ministers Farooq Abdullah, Omar Abdullah, Akhilesh Yadav and Gegong Apang are supposed to attend the meeting, TMC sources said. Most of these leaders have already arrived at the West Bengal capital.

Tejashwi  Yadav(RJD), Ajit Singh, and Jayant Chowdhary (both RLD), former Arunachal Pradesh chief minister Gegong Apang,Hemant Soren of JMM, Patidar movement leader Hardik Patel, Dalit leader Jignesh Mevani, and Mizoram opposition leader Pu Lalduhoma.

Three devoted BJP workers during Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s tenure and now steadfast anti-Modi campaigners Yashwant Sinha, Shatrughan Sinha, and Arun Shoiree will also be attending the rally today in support of Mamta Bannerjee and “United India Rally”.

Statements made by leaders at rally

“EVM is chor machine. We need to have paper ballots,” said Farooq Abdullah.

“You are seeing a rainbow of colours and parties. They are all different colours, but also represents diversity of the country”: Abhishek Manu Singhvi.

JMM leader Hemant Soren called for “uprooting” the BJP from India at Kolkata rally.

Yashwant Sinha at Kolkata Rally

“They said ‘Sabka saath, Sabka vikaas.’ They took ‘sabka saath,’ but did ‘sabka vinaash'” said Yashwant Sinha.

“What Pakistan couldn’t do, Modi and Amit Shah did in five years”, said Arvind Kejriwal at Kolkata Rally

Jayant Chaudhury at Kolkata Rally

“West Bengal thinks today, India thinks tomorrow,” says RLD’s Jayant Chaudhury.

Andhra CM N Chandrababu Naidu said, “The NDA government has betrayed the nation and has failed on all fronts, misused all institutional and constitutional bodies.”

HD Kumaraswamy at Kolkata Rally

Karnataka CM HD Kumaraswamy said, “You wait for some time, you will get a proper leader for the future development of the country. At this juncture all the party leaders should leave their personal agenda and come together to save the country.”

“That you are fighting for the youth and constitution of the country, we thank you didi,” said Hardik Patel, referring to Mamata Banerjee.

Preparations for the rally

The Trinamool Congress-led Mamta Bannerjee is expecting about four million people to attend the rally today.

As many as 10,000 police personnel have been deployed and around 400 police pickets have been set up to ensure foolproof security. Policemen in plain clothes, personnel of the Rapid Action Force and Quick Response Team have been deployed at the rally venue.

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