President Ranil asks Mamata if she will lead INDIA

KOLKATA – A smiling Sri Lanka President Ranil Wickremesinghe on Wednesday (13) asked West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee in a lighter vein, whether she is going to lead the opposition alliance INDIA (Indian National Developmental Inclusive Alliance).

Banerjee who met Wickremesinghe at the Dubai airport was also amused by the question.

“If people support us, we can be in a position (power) tomorrow,” replied the chief minister who is on a 12-day official trip to Dubai and Spain.

Over two dozen opposition parties have formed the Indian National Developmental Inclusive Alliance to take on the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led National Democratic Alliance unitedly in the 2024 Lok Sabha polls.

The coordination committee of INDIA held its first meeting at the residence of Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) supremo Sharad Pawar in Delhi on Wednesday.

In a post on X, Banerjee said that Wickremesinghe, seeing her at the airport lounge, called her to “join for some discussion” when she invited him to the state-organized Bengal Global Business Summit (BGBS) in November.

“His Excellency the President of Sri Lanka Ranil Wickremesinghe saw me at the Dubai International Airport Lounge and called me to join for some discussion. I have been humbled by his greetings and (have) invited him to the Bengal Global Business Summit 2023 in Kolkata,” she said.

Banerjee also said Wickremesinghe has invited her to visit the island country.

“It was a pleasant interaction with deep implications,” she added.

Banerjee reached Dubai on Tuesday (12) evening and was at the airport there this morning to board her flight to Spain.

This year’s BGBS is scheduled for November 21-22.

Banerjee had on Tuesday morning left for the tour of Dubai and Spain, during which she will attend business summits to attract investments to the state.



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