New Delhi: The Mamata Banerjee-led Trinamool Congress, which is virtually at war with the Narendra Modi government over the demonetisation issue, on Tuesday got a shot in the arm when BJP ally Shiv Sena decided to join its march to Rashtrapati Bhavan on Wednesday to press for rollback of the currency spike decision.
Delhi Chief Minister and Aam Aadmi Party leader Arvind Kejriwal and former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister and National Conference leader Omar Abdullah are also to participate in the march.
Ever since Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced that Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 currency notes will no longer be legal tender from November 8 midnight, Trinmaool supremo Banerjee has been up in arms against the move.
She has reached out to opposition parties, including arch rival Communist Party of India-Marxist, for putting up a united fight against what she said was an "anti-people" move.
"Mamata will be walking tomorrow (Wednesday) to Rashtrapati Bhavan and we are going to meet the President (Pranab Mukherjee). Besides Delhi Chief Minister, Omar Abdullah will be present," Trinamool Rajya Sabha member Derek O'Brien said on Tuesday.
"We have spoken to the Left (parties); we have spoken to others like the Shiv Sena. This is not the time for politics; this is the time to take the people's story, which is a grim story, to the President," he said.
While Shiv Sena President Uddhav Thackeray had a telephonic conversation with Banerjee on the fallout of demonetisation, party MP Sanjay Raut said the party will join the march.
"Mamata called up Uddhav and said they are going to the meet the President. She asked if the Shiv Sena will join the march.
"We have decided to join the march on the basis of issues related to demonetisation," Raut told media persons in Mumbai.
A constituent of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party-led NDA at the Centre and in Maharashtra, the Shiv Sena has virulently criticised the demonetisation move.
"I have spoken to various political parties. I have spoken to (Congress Vice President) Rahul Gandhi, (Bihar Chief Minister) Nitish Kumar, (Odisha Chief Minister)Naveen Patnaik and (Samajwadi Party chief) Mulayam Singh Yadav.
"If they want to join me, it is good. If not, then I will go alone with my MPs," Banerjee told media persons in Kolkata before leaving for Delhi.
While Banerjee had called up CPI-M General Secretary Sitaram Yechury to express concern over demonetisation, the Marxists are unlikely to be part of the Trinamool march.
Replying to media queries on the CPI-M joining the march, Yechury said his party will confront the Narendra Modi government in Parliament first and decide its future course of action based on the government's response in the house.
The Trinamool, though, appeared unperturbed.
"It is not about the left or the right; it is about everyone. It is time to act, the matter (demonetisation) has already spun out of hand," said O'Brien.