The details of the consultations were not known immediately but were said to be in line with the government’s efforts to evolve a broad-based consensus on efforts to fight Covid-19 through a combined containment strategy.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday reached out to two former presidents and two former prime ministers of India to discuss country’s response to the unprecedented crisis over coronavirus outbreak, said officials privy to the developments.
Pranab Mukherjee and Pratibha Patil are the two former Presidents to have received a call from the prime minister while Manmohan Singh of the Congress and Deve Gowda of the JD(S) are the two former prime ministers to have been approached over the phone, said officials who didn’t wish to be named.
The details of the consultations were not known immediately but were said to be in line with the government’s efforts to evolve a broad-based consensus on efforts to fight Covid-19 through a combined containment strategy. PM Modi is scheduled to also consult leaders of major political parties represented in Parliament in an all party meeting to be held over video conference on Wednesday.
The prime minister is also said to have called up Congress president Sonia Gandhi, Samajwadi Party patriarch Mulayam Singh, SP chief Akhilesh Yadav, Trinamool Congress chief and West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee, Odisha chief minister and BJD supremo Naveen Patnaik, Telangana chief minister K Chandrashekhar Rao, DMK chief MK Stalin and Shiromani Akali Dal patriarch Parkash Singh Badal, reported ANI.
The all-party meet comes at a time when India is completing 11 days of the 21-day national lockdown announced by the prime minister to disrupt the chain of infections and amid the prime minister’s appeal to states to give suggestions for a phased exit from the lockdown to mitigate against the huge economic losses while preventing a spike in infections.
The Prime Minister has often said that dealing with the coronavirus pandemic will require a united response from the country and has also held a few rounds of meetings with the chief ministers of the states, several of them ruled by the opposition parties.