NEW DELHI: President Of India, Draupadi Murmu is set to host a prestigious G20 special dinner this Saturday in Delhi, and the guest list is generating considerable buzz. The distinguished attendees include all Cabinet and state ministers, Chief Ministers from across India, Secretaries to the Government of India, and other notable guests. Adding to the significance of the event, former Prime Ministers Dr Manmohan Singh and HD Deve Gowda have also received coveted invitations to join the gathering. However, the JD-S patriarch has decided to skip the mega event due to his poor health.
However, in a noteworthy exclusion, political party leaders have been left off the guest list. Mallikarjun Kharge, the Leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha, who holds a cabinet minister rank, did not receive an invitation to this exclusive G20 dinner, said sources.
Other confirmed attendees at this gala affair include Chief Ministers Nitish Kumar (Bihar), Hemant Soren (Jharkhand), Mamata Banerjee (West Bengal), MK Stalin (Tamil Nadu), Arvind Kejriwal (Delhi), and Bhagwant Mann (Punjab).
This development follows a recent controversy surrounding President Draupadi Murmu’s invitation, which referred to her as the “President of Bharat” instead of “President of India.” Sources indicate that the guest list comprises cabinet and state ministers, chief ministers, government secretaries, and other distinguished individuals.
Inportantly, Mallikarjun Kharge, a Member of Parliament, Leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha, and President of the grand old party, remains uninvited possibly due to his non-ministerial status within the central or state governments, according to sources.
While Mamata Banerjee’s attendance may seem surprising given her previous objections to the invitation’s wording, sources suggest that her presence could be attributed to her friendship with Sheikh Hasina, the Prime Minister of Bangladesh, who is also expected to be in attendance. The Trinamool Congress chief has a warm relationship with Sheikh Hasina, and the CPI(M) speculates that Banerjee might have additional engagements in New Delhi.
Senior Bengal BJP leader Rahul Sinha expressed his support for Banerjee’s decision to attend, highlighting the importance of representing West Bengal on this global stage.
The G20 Summit’s gala dinner will be held at the Bharat Mandapam’s multi-function hall, located within the revamped India Trade Promotion Organisation complex at Pragati Maidan in Delhi, with ample seating capacity. The evening will feature a brief cultural program alongside the sumptuous dinner.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi will personally greet each visiting head of state at the venue and host a working lunch for them on the same day. The G20 Summit, occurring under India’s presidency, is scheduled for September 9 and 10 in Delhi, attracting heads of state from around the world, including US President Joe Biden.