New Delhi: Shiromani Akali Dal president Sukhbir Badal said on Wednesday said that all alliance partners must settle their differences to ensure victory in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls. His comments comes a day before BJP president Amit Shah is scheduled to meet him and SAD patriarch Parkash Singh Badal in Chandigarh. "It is a war like situation... The General Elections are due next year and we need to strengthen the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) and should resolve our differences to emerge victorious," Badal told PTI.
Shah has embarked on an outreach exercise to win over allies, particularly those who have been criticising or expressing their dissent with the party, in a bid to strengthen the NDA. According to Badal, the BJP and the SAD are "natural allies". "It is not a relation of give and take," he said. Asked about the TDP leaving the NDA and the Shiv Sena announcing that it will contest the 2019 polls on its own, Badal in a limited response underlined that the Congress is the principal opposition party of all NDA allies in their respective states.
Will fight all elections solo, says Shiv Sena
The Shiv Sena on Wednesday questioned the BJP's outreach programme after suffering defeats in bypolls and asserted it will fight all upcoming elections solo. "The PM is touring the world and the BJP chief is going around the country as part of their sampark programme. Shah will be meeting NDA allies. However, what exactly will he do? Why is he meeting at this juncture when the BJP has suffered defeats in bypolls," the Sena asked in an editorial in the party mouthpiece Saamana. The focus on the 2019 polls may be the reason for Shah's outreach, but the BJP has lost connect with the people," it said.
"Winds of change of governance are blowing in Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh. Change of governance is inevitable in Maharashtra as well. Amit Shah intends to win 350 seats in the Lok Sabha on the BJP's own strength. He says Ram Mandir will be built then. His stubbornness needs to be saluted," the Sena added. The party added that inflation had peaked due to the high prices of petrol and diesel and farmers were protesting as their connect with the government was lost.
It noted that the BJP had broken contact with Naidu in Andhra Pradesh and questioned if building an equation with him once again will be part of Shah's outreach programme. If Naidu does not agree, YS Jaganmohan Reddy (of the YSR Congress) is available, the Sena said sarcastically.
The BJP has launched the 'sampark for samarthan' exercise to mark the fourth anniversary of the Modi government as it prepares for the 2019 Lok Sabha election. About 4,000 BJP functionaries, including CMs, Union ministers as well as panchayat members, across the country will contact one lakh people who are recognised names in their fields to inform them about the government's achievements.
(With PTI inputs)