New Delhi: Union Minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi on Saturday took a dig at the Opposition’s United India Rally being helmed by West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee in Kolkata’s Brigade Parade Ground on Saturday and compared the leaders to wrestlers who have already tasted defeat inside the ring.

Naqvi said, ” Ye sab thake huye pite huye pehelwan hain jo akhaade mein ja kar phir apni qismat aazmana chahte hain. Pehla gathbandhan(in Karnataka) hi is haal mein hai toh aage kya hoga.” (These politicians are all equivalent to wrestlers who have been beaten inside the ring and have come again to test their luck. The Opposition’s alliance in Karnataka has taken such a turn, god knows what will happen to this alliance.)

Meanwhile, the Opposition’s United India Rally which has kicked off saw several political leaders expressing their concern with PM Modi and Amit Shah at the Centre. While MLA from Gujarat, Jignesh Mevani said the country is passing through an unprecedented crisis and appealed to all the parties to come together to defeat Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), Gegong Apang, former CM of Arunachal Pradesh spoke about how the last four years have been testing time for Indian democracy.

On the other hand, Mizoram leader Lalduhawma Ji demanded a secular government at the Centre. Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD) leader Jayant Chaudhury praised Banerjee and said, “What Bengal thinks today, India thinks tomorrow. Mamata Didi has shown it today.”

There are a total of five stages in Banerjee’s event today. The first stage is the main stage, which will come up in front of the fountain opposite the Victoria Memorial Hall and will accommodate senior leaders including the TMC Chief herself.

The second and the third stage will be for the MPs and State Government ministers respectively and the other for the district presidents and functionaries. While the fourth and fifth stage are from the cultural world and another on which cultural programmes will be held.

This mega rally assumes significance as the TMC is trying to project Banerjee as the potential prime ministerial candidate. The traffic movement has been suspended on certain roads and dedicated corridors for VVIPs have been put in place. TMC is saying all most 40 lakh people will attend the rally. While the strength of the Brigade Parade Grounds is close to 20 lakh.