Visakhapatnam: In yet another show of opposition unity, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister and TDP chief Chandrababu Naidu along with his West Bengal and Delhi counterparts, Mamata Banerjee and Arvind Kejriwal respectively, will address an election rally here on Sunday as part of their campaign against Prime Minister Narndra Modi for the coming Lok Sabha polls.
The three-hour rally will commence at around 5.30 p.m. at the Indira Priyadarshini Municipal Stadium in this port town.
Trinamool Congress supremo Mamata Banerjee and Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) chief Arvind Kejriwal will campaign for Naidu's Telugu Desam Party (TDP) at the mega rally.
Banerjee arrived here in the afternoon while Kejriwal is to reach by the evening.
After the rally, the three Chief Ministers will remain in Visakhapatnam to discuss the national scenario and work out strategies in the coming days.
The move is part of simultaneous Assembly and Parliamentary polls which will take place in Andhra Pradesh in the first phase on April 11.
Five years ago in the same location, Naidu along with Modi and film actor Pawan Kalyan had addressed a joint rally seeking mandate for the TDP rule in the state and formation of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led NDA government at the Centre in the 2014 Lo Sabha elections.
Naidu had pulled his TDP out of the NDA in March 2018 alleging injustice being meted out to the state by the Modi government.
Since then, he has been in the forefront of the proposed Grand Alliance (mahagathbandhan), trying to get together all opposition parties, including the Congress.
Naidu, who orchestrated a big rally against the Modi government in Delhi, has lined up all his allies for his campaign in Andhra Pradesh against Modi at the Centre and YSR Congress Party in Andhra Pradesh.
Though many other leaders from the proposed Grand Alliance including Janata Dal-Secular President H.D. Deve Gowda, DMK chief M.K. Stalin, Nationalist Congress Party President Sharad Pawar, Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) leader Tejashwi Yadav and former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Farooq Abdulla were invited to the rally, but were unable to attend, a TDP leader familiar with the development said.
Kejriwal and Abdullah had already addressed a few meetings in the state.
Gowda is expected to join the campaign for the TDP next week and more leaders from non-BJP parties are expected to canvass in support of TDP candidates in next few days.
Visakhapatnam is a very important constituency like Hyderabad as it is a cosmopolitan city with a large number of people from West Bengal, Odisha and northeastern states settling there for education, employment and business activities.
"We are fighting against Modi government because it did not give special status to Andhra Pradesh despite its promises. There are other many issues on which the TDP was cheated," Lanka Dinakar, TDP national spokesperson, told IANS.
He said that a joint campaign by Banerjee and Kejriwal would really help garner votes in favour of the TDP.
The Congress however, is staying away from the Visakhapatnam rally because the party is fighting the elections independently in all the 175 Assembly and 25 Lok Sabha constituencies in Andhra Pradesh.