Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister and TDP leader N Chandrababu Naidu on Sunday met UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi after holding a second round of talks with top opposition leaders including Congress president Rahul Gandhi and NCP chief Sharad Pawar, as part of his outreach to Opposition leaders in order to firm up a non-BJP front ahead of the Lok Sabha poll results on May 23.
The campaigning of this Lok Sabha Election 2019 has ended and as we await the last phase of polling, Andhra Pradesh CM Shri N Chandrababu Naidu paid me a visit to discuss the on going and future political scenario of our country.@ncbn pic.twitter.com/iNYtqqaAFN— Sharad Pawar (@PawarSpeaks) May 18, 2019
Naidu also met CPI-M chief Sitaram Yechury.
Andhra Pradesh CM N Chandrababu Naidu meets CPI (Marxist) General Secretary Sitaram Yechury pic.twitter.com/hg7adxx3Ok— ANI (@ANI) May 19, 2019
Naidu, who arrived in the national capital on Friday, had met Gandhi, Nationalist Congress Party chief Pawar, Loktantrik Janata Dal leader Sharad Yadav and leaders of the Communist Party of India on Saturday as well.
He had then flew to Lucknow and met Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav and Bahujan Samaj Party chief Mayawati.
Sunday's meeting assumes significance as Naidu is meeting Gandhi and Pawar after holding talks with the SP and BSP chiefs, who have not openly come in favour of an opposition alliance so far.
The TDP chief's deliberations are part of his efforts to unite non-NDA parties and bring them together on one platform to stake their claim for next government formation in case the NDA fails to get the majority mark.
The Telugu Desam Party chief has held several rounds of discussion with various opposition leaders, including TMC supremo Mamata Banerjee, AAP national convener Arvind Kejriwal and CPI (M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury.
According to the Telugu Desam Party sources, Naidu is likely to meet UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi at her residence on Sunday evening.
It is a pleasure to welcome Hon’ble Chief Minister Shri N Chandrababu Naidu Ji to Lucknow pic.twitter.com/B2SKJlG5PK— Akhilesh Yadav (@yadavakhilesh) May 18, 2019
He also met leaders of the Communist Party of India on Saturday.
On Friday, he said that all parties, including the rival K. Chandrashekhar Rao-led Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS), were welcome to join the non-BJP Mahagathbandhan (grand-alliance).
Naidu also met the Election Commission on Friday and accused it of being biased and pro-government.
Naidu's TDP was a part of the NDA, but quit the alliance a few months ago.
The Congress and other opposition parties have exuded confidence of forming the next government.
Meanwhile, UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi is said to be in close touch with DMK leader M.K. Stalin on building the numbers for the UPA.
Stalin, whose party is an ally of Congress, is reportedly working the channels to get the support of the Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS) and YSR Congress Party (YSRCP), who are likely to be crucial for government formation in the event the Lok Sabha elections throw up a fractured verdict.
This assumes significance in the backdrop of TRS chief's May 13 meeting with Stalin in Chennai.
Though KCR reportedly discussed his idea of a Federal Front and urged Stalin to support the proposed alliance of regional parties, the DMK leader requested him to back the Congress for formation of a non-BJP government.
Since Stalin has taken an initiative, the Congress leadership is believed to have felt it appropriate to entrust him with the task of holding further talks with both KCR and Jagan.
(With inputs from Agencies)