Sonia, Kejriwal, Mamta to attend Nitish's oath taking

Patna: A number of leaders, including Congress chief Sonia Gandhi, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamta Banerjee, will attend Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar oath-taking ceremony being described as "a new beginning of opposition unity in the country".

Besides Sonia Gandhi, Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi too be present at the oath taking ceremony on November 20.

Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav will be there along with Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik and his Assam counterpart Tarun Gagoi.

Former prime minister Deve Gowda as well as former Jharkhand chief ministers Babulal Marandi and Hemant Soren and Indian National Lok Dal leader Abhay Chauthala have been invited to attend the oath taking ceremony.

"We have decided to invite all leaders opposed to BJP to attend the oath-taking ceremony of Nitish Kumar," JD-U spokesperson Ajay Alok said here on Thursday.

RJD chief Lalu Prasad and JD-U president Sharad Yadav will be the main guests at the function.

JD-U general secretary K.C. Tayagi said that all the big leaders opposed to the Bharatiya Janata Party's (BJP) brand of politics will come-together to express their show of unity during the oath taking ceremony.

"It will be a new beginning of opposition unity in the country," he said.

Nitish Kumar on Wednesday said he will recommend dissolution of the state legislative assembly on November 14 after holding the last meeting of his cabinet. He will stake claim to form his new government after a joint meeting of grand alliance on the same day.

According to JD-U leaders here, Nitish Kumar will again take oath as chief minister along with a 36-member council of ministers after the Chhath festival to be celebrated in the third week of November.

The Grand Alliance routed the BJP in assembly elections, the results of which were announced on Sunday. The RJD emerged as the single largest party with 80 assembly seats, followed by the JD-U with 71 and the Congress with 27 seats.

There will be 16 ministers from Lalu Prasad's RJD, 15 from the JD-U and five from the Congress.

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