BJP West Bengal president Dilip Ghosh today said that the Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Tapas Roy’s speech in Bankura, asking the INC and Left parties to join the TMC, was proof that his party had realised it couldn’t win alone and “parivartan” (change) was now bound to happen. Earlier, the TMC MLA from Basirhat had urged the Left-INC alliance to join the TMC to contest the upcoming West Bengal assembly election to stop the BJP from coming to power in the state.
Speaking at a public meeting in Bankura’s Onda on 12 February, Tapas Roy had said that the INC and the left could not put up a fight against the BJP alone, which was why they had entered into an alliance. “They (BJP) are saying that they will rule Bengal. I want to tell Congressmen and Left party leaders that Arup Khan (Onda TMC MLA) will join your procession. Congress and the Left can’t do it alone. You also know that this is not possible with your declining energy. That’s why you two have come together,” the TMC MLA said.
However, after telling the INC and the communists that they were weak, what Roy said implied the TMC was weak too! “Don’t stop Mamata Banerjee. Do not cut the canal and bring crocodiles. You also know that you do not have the strength to resist the kapalik (occultist) power. The name of the one who can is Mamata Banerjee. All BJP leaders are afraid of her,” Roy had said in Bankura.
The Left and the INC, however, rejected the appeal downright, terming the TMC as the “B team” of the saffron camp in Bengal. This was the second time in the last one month that TMC had appealed to the communists and the INC to put up a united fight against the BJP, which is now elated over the exchanges between the TMC, INC and communists.
Reacting to TMC’s proposal, state senior INC leader Abdul Mannan blamed the party for the growth of BJP in Bengal. “We are not interested in aligning with the TMC. Why is the TMC now interested in an alliance with us after poaching our MLAs for the last 10 years ? It is due to Mamata Banerjee that the BJP has gained strength in Bengal,” he said.
Senior CPI(M) leader Sujan Chakraborty said both BJP and TMC are trying to woo Left votes after branding the Left and the INC as a negligible political force in the state. “Both TMC and BJP are now either praising the Left or are seeking our support. It only reflects that we are still a force to reckon with,” he said.
TMC-INC-Left exchange turns BJP upbeat
Today, speaking to news agency ANI, Ghosh said, “TMC’s Tapas Roy is welcoming CPM and Congress party repeatedly by asking them to join hands in defeating BJP. However, this is not a statement by Tapas Roy but of TMC party. Nobody from TMC can dare to say anything without the permission of (TMC) high command.”
“TMC has realised that it is impossible for them to win against BJP by fighting all alone, ‘Parivartan‘ is bound to happen. I think what he (Roy) has said is true. Fight against BJP together; we’re ready too. We’re ready to bring the much-needed parivartan. People of Bengal have understood that they no longer need Mamata Banerjee but BJP,” Ghosh said.
In the 2016 Assembly election, Left and INC had come together and bagged 76 seats whereas TMC then got 211 seats.
The INC and Left parties are now concluding their seat-sharing procedure through a few final rounds of meetings by next week for the state election, party sources have confirmed.
The INC and the Left Front alliance had held two rounds of meetings and finalised a seat-sharing agreement for 193 of the total 294 seats in the upcoming assembly election.