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Oppn to hold joint protest on 'economic slowdown', RCEP during Parliament session: Azad

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(Eds: Adding details ) New Delhi, Nov 4 (PTI) The opposition will hold a joint protest on issues such as economic slowdown, RCEP, farm distress and unemployment during the upcoming Parliament session, senior Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad said on Monday after a meeting of senior opposition leaders here. He also said Opposition parties will meet again soon to discuss the issue of snooping and decide on the future course of action on the issue. The meeting was attended by Congress leaders Azad, Ahmed Patel and Randeep Surjewala as well as RLSP chief and former Union minister Upendra Kushwaha, CPI general secretary D Raja, CPI(M)'s T K Rangarajan, RJD's Manoj Jha, TMC's Nadeem ul Haque, DMK's T R Baalu and RLD's Ajit Singh and Sharad Yadav. Congress president Sonia Gandhi and NCP leader Sharad Pawar were not present at the meeting. Sources close to Pawar said he was busy in a parliamentary standing committee meeting. There was no representation from the Samajwadi Party, the Bahujan Samaj Party and the Aam Aadmi Party. The meeting was convened by Azad who is the leader of opposition in the Rajya Sabha. According to sources, discussions focussed on the joint opposition's strategy to corner the government on poor economic indicators and India's decision to consider signing the RCEP. The leaders at the meeting were deliberating on a strategy to take on the government both inside and outside Parliament. The Congress plans to hit the streets from Tuesday till November 15 to highlight the "failures" of the BJP government at the Centre on issues such as "economic slowdown, rising unemployment and farm crisis". Slamming the RCEP, Sonia Gandhi said on Saturday the agreement will deal a "body blow" to the economy, resulting in "untold hardship" for farmers, shopkeepers and small enterprises. The winter session of Parliament will be held from November 18 to December 13. PTI SKC ASK MIN HMB

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