New Delhi: At a special dinner-cum-meeting hosted by Prime Minister Narendra Modi here on Monday, the 33 constituents of the ruling National Democratic Alliance (NDA) vowed to work together under his leadership to succeed in the 2019 general election.
The members passed a resolution expressing their commitment after their brief meeting at the Pravasi Bharatiya Kendra, where the prime minister hosted a special dinner for them.
Replying to a question as to whether presidential election also came up for discussion, Jaitley said, “It was not on the agenda.”
Replying to an identical question, TDP Chief and Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu said NDA partners will collectively take a call on that whenever the issue was deliberated upon.
Both Jaitley and Naidu unanimously identified “clean and corruption-free governance” provided by the Modi dispensation as its biggest achievement.
All NDA constituents hailed the performance of the Modi government, especially the leadership of the Prime Minister, Jaitley told reporters.
Union minister and LJP leader Ram Vilas Paswan put forth a proposal for fighting the upcoming Lok Sabha election under Modi and expanding the NDA’s base across the country. The proposal was accepted unanimously, Jaitley added.
“The NDA allies also passed a resolution to work together to win a second term under the strong leadership of Prime Minister Modi in 2019,” he said.
The Minister said the ruling alliance has expanded its support base in the last three years during which its popularity and acceptability have also gone up.
Echoing similar sentiments, Naidu said, “India will be the only country which will have double digit growth and this is only possible under the leadership of Prime Minister Modi.”
The Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister said the NDA allies are committed to working in tandem to win the 2019 elections under Modi’s leadership.
Today, under the able leadership of Modi, India’s presence is being felt and acknowledged at the global level. Countrymen across the world feel proud about being Indian, Naidu said.
The meeting began with the inaugural address by BJP President Amit Shah. His speech was followed by those of SAD chief Parkash Singh Badal, TDP supremo Naidu and LJP leader Ram Vilas Paswan.
Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray, who has often targeted the Modi government and BJP, was also present and addressed the gathering.
According to sources, Shah also met Thackeray separately on the sidelines of the meeting and the two leaders discussed a host of issues.
PDP leader and Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti could not attend the meeting and a representative deputised for her.
The NDA is celebrating its third year in office since storming to power in the last general elections.
Earlier, television visuals showed a wide array of NDA leaders such as Sushma Swaraj, Rajnath Singh, Venkaiah Naidu, Ananth Sharma, Piyush Goel, Ram Vilas Paswan, MP PD Rai from the SDF party, Uddhav Thackeray of Shiv Sena, Arun Jaitley and Nitin Gadkari, among others, arriving at the venue.
All the NDA allies were invited to the meeting-cum-dinner.
PM Modi had reached the venue shortly after the guests arrived with BJP chief Amit Shah in tow.
(With PTI inputs)