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"2 more regional parties to join INDIA": Sena (UBT) MP ahead of third Oppn meet today

Mumbai: Ahead of the third meeting of the Opposition alliance — INDIA — in Mumbai, Shiv Sena (Uddhav Balasaheb Thackeray) MP Anil Desai on Thursday said two more Maharashtra-based regional parties will join the bloc.
Speaking to ANI, Anil Desai said, "Two more regional parties in Maharashtra will join INDIA, taking the total number of parties in the alliance from 26 to 28."
Congress MP Nasir Hussain, too, claimed that 7 big and small parties were in touch with them.
"7 more big and small parties are in touch with us and we are considering bringing them on board. We will arrive at a decision and make a formal announcement shortly," Desai told ANI.
On who will be the prime ministerial face in the Opposition alliance, the Sena (UBT) MP said, "We believe in a parliamentary democracy not a presidential form of government."
As the battle heats up for next year's Lok Sabha elections, the 26-member Opposition bloc — INDIA — will on Thursday hold its third meeting in Mumbai, picking up from where they left off in their last huddle at Bengaluru and carrying forward the process of laying a broader roadmap against the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) at the Centre.
While the discussion among the partner leaders in the bloc would centre on the battle plan for the next general elections and a seat-sharing formula, the Indian National Developmental Inclusive Alliance (INDIA) is also likely to unveil its logo during the two-day meeting starting Thursday.
The INDIA leaders would go into an informal huddle on Thursday and the same would be followed by a formal meeting on September 1.
While the inaugural meeting of the Opposition bloc was convened by Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, the third meeting is being organised by the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA), the Opposition alliance in Maharashtra comprising the Congress, Shiv Sena (UBT) and the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) faction led by Sharad Pawar.
Earlier, on Monday, Maharashtra Congress president Nana Patole confirmed the participation of the party's national president Mallikarjun Kharge, as well as Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi, at the two-day meeting.
Tamil Nadu CM MK Stalin had also confirmed his participation in the meeting earlier.

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