West Bengal

AIMIM will not be a factor in Bengal: Mamata to TMC workers

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee. File   | Photo Credit: PTI

West Bengal Chief Minister and Trinamool Congress supremo Mamata Banerjee on Thursday said Asaduddin Owaisi's AIMIM would not be a factor in the upcoming assembly polls in the state as its role as "B team of the BJP" has been exposed in the Bihar elections.

During a meeting in Murshidabad, a Muslim-dominated district, Banerjee urged party leaders to put up a united fight against the BJP and the other divisive forces.

"During the core committee meeting, Mamata di assured us that AIMIM would not be a factor in Murshidabad district.

She told us that Owaisi's party was exposed after the Bihar polls," a local TMC leader said.

Murshidabad district comprises 22 assembly seats.

In the recently concluded Bihar elections, the AIMIM won five seats in the Muslims-dominated Seemanchal region on the border of West Bengal.

Earlier this month, Owaisi had met Pirzada Abbas Siddiqui of Hooghly district's Furfura Sharif to discuss the seat-sharing arrangement.

The AIMIM chief has already expressed his desire to fight the upcoming assembly elections in the state.

The TMC had dubbed the AIMIM's entry in the state as an attempt to split the Muslim votes in the state and help the BJP.

The AIMIM has termed the allegation as "baseless" and "motivated".

A deciding factor in nearly 100-110 seats in the state, Muslims, who constitute 30 per cent of the population, till 2019, have acted as a bulwark of the TMC against its rivals, with most of them voting in favour of the party, considering it to be a "credible" force that can resist the saffron surge.

In a development that might upset several political equations in election-bound state, Siddiqui on Thursday floated a new political outfit, contending that he wishes to be the kingmaker after the polls.

The influential Muslim cleric said his new outfit -- Indian Secular Front (ISF) - plans to contest the elections from all 294 assembly seats in the state.

Elections to the Bengal assembly are likely to be held in April-May.

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Printable version | Mar 3, 2021 5:12:35 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/elections/west-bengal-assembly/aimim-will-not-be-a-factor-in-bengal-mamata-to-tmc-workers/article33629892.ece

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