Mallikarjun Kharge, the Congress president, has been named chairperson of the opposition INDIA alliance. Following weeks of squabbling among the alliance parties over the pivotal job, Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar was appointed convener. The decision was made during a virtual summit of the senior INDIA bloc leaders on Saturday.
Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav and Trinamool Congress (TMC) supremo Mamata Banerjee, who were not present at the meeting, will be informed of the decision, according to sources acquainted with the matter.
However, Nitish Kumar declined the position of convener, stating that someone from the Congress party should take on the duty, according to JD(U) leader Sanjay Jha, who attended the meeting. According to The Indian Express, Kumar stated that he would only accept the role if all sides agreed.
The coalition, created to confront the Narendra Modi-led BJP juggernaut in the 2024 general election, was facing internal problems on several topics, including the contentious selection of a convenor. According to PTI, the JD(U) sought Nitish Kumar as convener but was opposed by the TMC.
The INDIA bloc leaders held a virtual conference on Saturday afternoon to discuss the seat-sharing agenda, participation in the Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra, and other important alliance matters.
Sharad Pawar, the chief of the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), attended the INDIA bloc leaders' meeting in Mumbai via video conferencing.
MK Stalin, the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister and DMK leader, and Kanimozhi Karunanidhi, the party's head, attended the meeting via video conference in Chennai.
According to the PTI report, Saturday's deliberation was the second attempt to have a virtual meeting, as the first attempt failed a few days earlier.