Mamata Banerjee's mega rally in Kolkata | Praveen Jain/ThePrint
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The Kolkata rally saw prominent anti-BJP parties attacking the Narendra Modi government.

Over 20 Opposition leaders attended West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee’s mega United India Rally in Kolkata Saturday.

Three chief ministers — Delhi’s Arvind Kejriwal, Andhra Pradesh’s N. Chandrababu Naidu and Karnataka’s — H.D. Kumaraswamy marked their presence.

Other opposition leaders, including Sharad Pawar, Akhilesh Yadav, Mallikarjun Kharge, Farooq Abdullah, Omar Abdullah, among others, too attended the rally.

The rally saw prominent anti-Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) parties attacking the Narendra Modi government at the Centre.

West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee addressing the rally. | Ashok Nath Dey
(From left to right) Andhra Pradesh CM N. Chandrababu Naidu, West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee, Nationalist Congress Party president Sharad Pawar and Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge. | Ashok Nath Dey
The united opposition front at the mega rally in Kolkata| Ashok Nath Dey
Mamata Banerjee with Rashtriya Janata Dal leader Tejashwi Yadav | Ashok Nath Dey
Mamata Banerjee having a conversation with Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav | Ashok Nath Dey
Andhra Pradesh chief minister N. Chandrababu Naidu greets Akhilesh Yadav | Ashok Nath Dey

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  1. Mamata Banerjee, JDS leader HD Kumaraswamy, Samajwadi Party President Akhilesh Yadav, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, BSP General Secretary Satish Chandra Mishra, National Conference President Farooq Abdullah and other opposition leaders join hands together during TMC’s mega rally Brigade Samavesh. (Image: PTI)

  2. 1. On can understand why all regional parties have demonstrated unity in Kolkata rally. One can also understand why all of them wish to defeat BJP. 2. Whether the Congress will be invited as a partner of United Opposition Front (UOF) is an interesting question in this context and answer to this question is not an easy one. 3. As a citizen-voter, my observations on opposition show of unity and real strength of UOF are: (a) not one of the regional parties has a national presence or economic agenda; (b) these parties are yet to decide on a common programme of action; (c) leader of each party has limited interest of serving his/her voters in his/her respective State. Further, so many regional leaders have Prime Ministerial ambitions. Hence, my view is that if leaders of regional parties wish that UOF be accepted as a serious contender for forming a government in the Centre after the coming LS election, then I think they should demonstrate their capabilities to govern a vast country.

  3. A most impressive conclave. Also a very direct, honorable way of staking her claim. The regional parties are a valuable component of our federalism. No justification to dismiss them as “ khichadi “. A triploar polity works well for India. Unfortunate that the Congress could not hold on to Ms Mamata Banerjee, give her space to grow. Difficult to name any present Congress leader from Bengal. Shri Pranab Mukherjee was an important figure in Delhi, but he contributed nothing to the revival of the party in the state.

  4. CM Mamata Banerjee has assembled a lot of electoral stardust on the stage in my beloved Calcutta. It would have been gracious for Congress President to have been present.

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