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Updated January 25th, 2024 at 14:10 IST

HUGE: TMC Points At Congress' Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury as Key Factor in Failed Alliance in West Bengal

Mamata Banerjee on Wednesday a nnounced that her party TMC would contest the upcoming Lok Sabha polls in the state independently

TMC Points to Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury as Key Factor in Failed Alliance in West Bengal
TMC Points to Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury as Key Factor in Failed Alliance in West Bengal | Image:ANI/File
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Kolkata: In a significant blow to the opposition INDI bloc, West Bengal Chief Minister and Trinamool Congress supremo Mamata Banerjee announced on Wednesday that her party would contest the upcoming Lok Sabha polls in the state independently. The decision followed failed seat-sharing negotiations with the Congress party. A day later, Trinamool Congress leader Derek O'Brien pinpointed senior Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury as the reason for the failed alliance in West Bengal. O'Brien remarked, "After LS polls, if Cong defeats BJP on a substantial number of seats, we will be part of the front that fights for the Constitution."

TMC-Congress Political Turmoil Unfolds 

Speaking at Dumurjala helipad in Howrah district yesterday, Banerjee revealed, "I had given them (Congress) a proposal (on seat-sharing), but they refused it at the outset. Our party has now decided to go alone in Bengal."

Asserting her position, Banerjee declared, “Let the Congress fight 300 seats on its own (in the country). The regional parties are together and can contest the rest. However, we will not tolerate any interference by them (Congress) in Bengal.”

Mamata Banerjee's unexpected decision to sever ties with the Congress came a day before Congress leader Rahul Gandhi's 'Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra' was scheduled to enter West Bengal. The move prompted an immediate response from the Congress, with party spokesperson Jairam Ramesh asserting that the opposition bloc INDIA ‘cannot be imagined without Mamata Banerjee’.

Congress leader Jairam Ramesh on Thursday said that the party is hopeful of finding a solution to the seat-sharing impasse with the TMC. Ramesh, while speaking to reporters at the Bagdogra airport, maintained that the Congress cannot think of an INDI bloc without Banerjee, as she is indispensable in the fight against the BJP in the country.

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‘We All Want Mamata Banerjee’: Jairam Ramesh

"We all want Mamata Banerjee to be a part of the 'Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra' as our motto is common... If we want to defeat the BJP in Bengal and India, she is very much needed. Our leaders Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi and Mallikarjun Kharge have immense respect for Mamata ji," he said.

‘Didi Is Enough’ Placards Welcome Rahul in Bengal

Amidst the political turmoil, Rahul Gandhi, leading the Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra, made a significant entry into West Bengal on Thursday. Welcomed by state Congress president Adhir Chowdhury, Gandhi faced protests from Trinamool Congress supporters, who displayed placards opposing outsider interference.

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The placards carried a clear message: "Didi is enough here; there is no need for outsiders."

Undeterred by the protests, Rahul Gandhi addressed the gathering, expressing his happiness to be in West Bengal. He stated, “We have come here to listen to you and stand with you... BJP-RSS are spreading hatred, violence, and injustice. So, INDIA formation is going to fight 'Anyay' together.”

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Heated war of words between Mamata and Adhir

The announcement to snap ties to Congress was followed a heated exchange between Mamata Banerjee and Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury on Tuesday. Chowdhury criticised the West Bengal Chief Minister, labelling her as an opportunist and asserting that the Congress would contest the Lok Sabha elections independently. 

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Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury's remarks came amid reports suggesting that the TMC was poised to field candidates in all 42 Lok Sabha seats in West Bengal. Attempting to ease tensions, former Congress president Rahul Gandhi asserted that Mamata Banerjee was ‘close to him’, and Chowdhury's comments on seat-sharing talks 'won't matter'.

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Published January 25th, 2024 at 14:02 IST

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