Naveen, Mamata, Jaya conspicuously absent in NITI Aayog meet in Delhi

New Delhi: Apart from nine chief ministers from Congress-ruled States, West Bengal’s Mamata Banerjee, Odisha’s Naveen Patnaik and Tamil Nadu’s J. Jayalalithaa were among the non-National Democratic Alliance (NDA) CMs who skipped the NITI Aayog meet here on Wednesday.

The meet, convened by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, had the land acquisition Bill on its agenda.

“Our chief ministers have not gone to attend the meeting of NITI Aayog as the party’s stance on land bill is clear and it is against the legislation brought by the NDA government,” Congress spokesperson and former Union minister R.P.N.Singh said.

Congress has been opposing the Bill in its present form.

All the chief ministers of BJP-ruled States attended the meeting including Rajasthan’s Vasundhara Raje, Madhya Pradesh’s Shivraj Singh Chouhan and Chhattisgarh’s Raman Singh.

Meanwhile, other prominent Opposition chief ministers who attended the meeting were Bihar’s Nitish Kumar, Delhi’s Arvind Kejriwal and Tripura’s Manik Sarkar.

Modi has convened the second meeting of the Governing Council of NITI Aayog on Thursday in which the contentious Bill is expected to be discussed.

The meeting is being seen as an attempt by the NDA government to break the deadlock over the controversial Bill that is facing a strong opposition from the Congress.

The Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement (Second Amendment Bill, 2015) has been referred to a joint committee of both Houses of Parliament under the chairmanship of BJP’s S.S. Ahluwalia.