Poor's trust in us should not be broken: PM to BJP allies

While addressing a press conference, Senior BJP leader and union finance minister Arun Jaitley said a resolution has been passed where all parties have unanimously made a decision to contest 2019 Lok Sabha polls under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

A resolution passed at the meeting said, "In the extraordinary leadership of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, India has succeeded in establishing its identity in the world as a fast growing economy".

However, finance minister Arun Jaitley denied that a discussion on the presidential polls was on the agenda.

He said the allies lauded the pro-poor policies of the government and the steps taken for farmers and that the overwhelming victory in the recent assembly elections in UP were a reflection of the NDA's popularity.

The Prime minister talked about new India and youth development. "We do not want to break public's trust", the Prime Minister added. As each vote is important, BJP leaders like Manohar Parrikar and Adityanath Yogi, who have taken over as chief ministers of Goa and Uttar Pradesh respectively but have not yet been elected to their state assemblies, have been told not to quit their parliamentary seats. "Since the budget session will end in a few days, the government it seems is starting consultations for President and vice-president candidates", said a senior NDA leader. The meeting began with the inaugural address by BJP President Amit Shah.

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Interestingly, the Shiv Sena, which has often criticised the Centre's policies and the BJP, was also represented by party chief Uddhav Thackeray.

This is the second NDA meeting since 2014 and was aimed at smoothing the rough edges in the coalition, even as Modi enters the second half of his five-year tenure. According to sources, Shah also met Thackeray separately on the sidelines of the meeting and the two leaders discussed a host of issues. This will be significant for both BJP and Shiv Sena as the parties share a strained relationship in Maharashtra.

Meanwhile, the controversy around former BJP MP Tarun Vijay's comments on South-North divide also seem to be helping Venkaiah Naidu in placing his candidature with a strong push.

Interestingly, Congress president Sonia Gandhi will soon hold her annual dinner party for all Congress Lok Sabha and Rajya MPs as well as party general secretaries.

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