Patna: Thousands of communist sympathizers from across Bihar gathered at Patna's Gandhi Maidan on Thursday to take part in a rally sponsored by the Communist Party of India (ML) aimed to remove the NDA administration from power in the next year's Lok Sabha elections.

Dubbed 'BJP Bhagao, Loktantra Bachao' rally, a slight variation on the Congress and Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD)'s slogan of 'BJP Bhagao, Desh Bachao' earlier last month, today's rally had the support of nearly all leftist parties in Bihar along with tacit approval by other non-NDA parties in the state including the RJD and the Congress.

Speaking on the occasion, CPI-ML national general secretary Dipankar Bhattacharya said that just as BJP leader Narendra Modi had announced his Prime Ministerial candidacy from Patna's Gandhi Maidan during his Hunkar Rally in 2013, he was announcing the beginning of the countdown of Modi's departure from power.

"Narendra Modi's becoming the Prime Minister of India is a tragedy for the nation. Five years ago, he had announced his candidature from this very venue and today I am announcing the countdown of his departure," he said.

Leftist leaders in a show of solidarity in Patna on Thursday.

Bhattacharya also slammed Chief Minister Nitish Kumar for allowing criminals to take over the state and following on the path of his counterpart in Uttar Pradesh Yogi Adityanath.

The CPI-ML leader also demanded waving off of loans of all farmers in India and seizure of non-performing assets (NPA) to the tune of over Rs. 10 lakh crore from the rich capitalists.

Others who also spoke on the occasion included former Janata Dal – U leader and Speaker of Bihar Assembly Uday Narayan Chowdhary, JNU student union President N Sai Balaji, RJD leader Shivchandra Ram, and CPI leaders Awadhesh Kumar and Satyanarayan Singh.

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