NEW DELHI, Dec 5 (PTI): Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday chaired an all-party meeting at the Rashtrapati Bhavan to solicit suggestions for the G20 summit next year.
West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee, her Odisha counterpart Naveen Patnaik, Sikkim’s Prem Singh Tamang, and Maharashtra’s Eknath Shinde attended the meeting.
Also in attendance were Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal, his Andhra Pradesh counterpart Jagan Mohan Reddy, Tamil Nadu’s M K Stalin, BJP president J P Nadda, Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge, former prime minister H D Deve Gowda, CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury, CPI general secretary D Raja, Telugu Desam party chief Chandrababu Naidu.
Those on the government side present at the meeting included home minister Amit Shah, finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman, external affairs minister S Jaishankar, defence minister Rajnath Singh and Union minister Piyush Goyal.
At the meeting, the Ministry of External Affairs is expected to make a presentation about the programmes planned by the government during India’s presidency of G20, sources said.
India officially assumed the G20 presidency on December 1.
The country is expected to host over 200 preparatory meetings across the country beginning this month. The next G20 Leaders’ Summit at the level of heads of states or governments is scheduled to be held on September 9 and 10 next year in New Delhi.
The Prime Minister on Monday also said that India’s presidency of the G-20 is a matter of pride for all citizens and it is an occasion to establish globally Indianness and its culture.
Addressing a key meeting of BJP leaders from across the country, Modi also asked party members to maintain direct connection with border villagers and said they should be developed as places that draw visitors.
Former Chhattisgarh chief minister Raman Singh briefed reporters on the meeting and Modi’s closed-door address.
The Prime Minister inaugurated the BJP’s national office-bearers meeting and said there is an acknowledgement worldwide of the country’s emergence as an economic power amid global challenges like the Ukraine war and the Covid pandemic.
He also lauded the “Kashi Tamil Sangamam”, a month-long event going on in Varanasi that celebrates ancient cultural ties between the two places.
Modi said “sneh milan”, an idea he had first voiced during the party’s national executive meeting in Hyderabad, programmes should be promoted for cultural exchanges as being seen in Kashi, an ancient name of Varanasi.
Singh said the two-day meeting will discuss various topical issues and also upcoming state elections. Party leaders are deliberating on further strengthening its presence at booths.
Besides its national office-bearers, presidents and general secretaries (organisation) of the BJP’s state units are also part of the meeting chaired by the party’s national president J P Nadda.
The party’s future strategy, preparations for the next round of state assembly polls and various ongoing organisational activities will be discussed in the meeting which is also serving as a stock-taking exercise for leaders who are engaged in organisational works round the year, party sources have said.
Various groups of leaders, including Union ministers, have also been roped in to further strengthen the party’s presence, especially in places where it lost in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls and is eying victory in 2024.
Some electorally important states, including Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan, besides Tripura and Chhattisgarh, are scheduled to have assembly polls ahead of the Lok Sabha elections.
G20 or Group of 20 is an intergovernmental forum of the world’s major developed and developing economies. It comprises Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Turkey, the UK, the US and the European Union.