Nationalist Congress Party chief Sharad Pawar on Monday met political strategist Prashant Kishor in New Delhi and will host a meeting of leaders from several parties and eminent personalities on Tuesday to discuss the current scenario in the country, his party said and asserted that the Maratha strongman is working to unite the Opposition.
The meeting held at Pawar's residence, which was their second this month, lasted for more than two hours and has further fuelled speculation that a Third Front could be in the works to take on the Bharatiya Janata Party.
Kishor, who was instrumental in the Trinamool Congress' victory in the recent West Bengal assembly election, had a meeting with Pawar over lunch in Mumbai on June 11.
NCP spokesperson and minister in the Maharashtra government Nawab Malik in a series of tweets said Pawar will host a meeting of prominent political leaders as well as eminent persons at his residence in Delhi on Tuesday.
The meeting has been called to discuss the current scenario in the country and it will be attended by National Conference leader and former chief minister of Jammu and Kashmir Farooq Abdullah, Trinamool Congress leader Yashwant Sinha, Sanjay Singh from the Aam Aadmi Party and D Raja from the Communist Party of India, Malik said.
Sanjay Jha, Pawan Verma and Sudheendra Kulkarni will also be present in the meeting, Malik said.
"Pawar is working to unite all opposition leaders. Maybe, the meeting was to discuss it. The party's national executive meeting is also taking place in the national capital tomorrow," Malik said in Mumbai when asked about the NCP chief's meeting with Kishor.
Yashwant Sinha later tweeted that Pawar is hosting a meeting of the 'Rashtra Manch', a political action group floated by the former BJP leader in 2018 that targeted the Modi government's policies.
"We shall have a meeting of the Rashtra Manch tomorrow at 4 PM. Sri Sharad Pawar has kindly agreed to host the meeting at his place," he said.
Besides politicians, eminent people from various fields such as senior advocate K T S Tulsi, former chief election commissioner S Y Qureshi, former ambassador K C Singh, lyricist Javed Akhtar, film-maker Pritish Nandy, advocate Colin Gonsalves, filmmaker Pritish Nandi and media personalities Karan Thapar and Ashutosh will attend Tuesday's meeting, Malik said.
Kishor, who was part of the BJP's 2014 Lok Sabha campaign, later handled the campaign of several opposition parties like the TMC, AAP and the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam.