Updated January 19th, 2024 at 13:45 IST
Cracks in INDI? TMC Yet to Decide on Participating in Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra in Bengal
Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra, currently in Assam, is scheduled to enter West Bengal through Bakshirhat in Cooch Behar district on January 25
Kolkata: As the INDI bloc is struggling to build consensus over the issue of seat-sharing, INDI member Trinamool Congress is yet to decide if it will join the Rahul Gandhi-led Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra when it enters West Bengal on January 25.
Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra, currently in Assam, is scheduled to enter West Bengal through Bakshirhat in Cooch Behar district on January 25, traversing Jalpaiguri, Alipurduar, Uttar Dinajpur and Darjeeling before reaching Bihar on January 27.
It will re-enter West Bengal on January 30 through Malda and travel via Murshidabad, both strongholds of the Congress, before leaving the state on January 31.
"We are yet to decide on participating in the march. Also, we haven't received a formal invitation from the Congress. Once we receive an invite, we will announce our decision," a senior TMC leader told PTI.
Senior state Congress leader Pradip Bhattacharya said that the TMC should join the programme as it will send a positive message in favour of the INDIA bloc. "Now it is for the TMC to decide what they want," he said.
TMC in direct fight with BJP in Bengal, claims party
Clarity on the matter may emerge during TMC chief Mamata Banerjee's organisational meeting in Murshidabad district in the evening. TMC leaders, including Banerjee, have maintained that it is their party which is taking on the BJP in West Bengal.
"It is the Trinamool Congress, under the leadership of Mamata Banerjee and Abhishek Banerjee, which proved that the BJP could be defeated in Bengal in 2021," party spokesperson Kunal Ghosh said.
Struggle within INDI in Bengal
The TMC and the Congress, two key constituents of the INDIA bloc, are yet to reach anywhere near the seat-sharing deal for Lok Sabha elections in West Bengal.
The TMC's offer of two seats based on Congress's 2019 Lok Sabha election performance was deemed insufficient, escalating the tension between the two parties.
In the 2019 elections, TMC secured 22 seats, Congress won two, and the BJP secured 18 seats in the state.
The TMC had allied with the Congress in the 2001 assembly polls, 2009 Lok Sabha elections, and the 2011 assembly polls. The alliance ousted the CPI(M)-led Left Front government of 34 years in the 2011 polls.
(With PTI inputs)
Published January 19th, 2024 at 13:45 IST