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TMC leader Abhishek Banerjee hits out at BJP, Congress and Left before the upcoming byelections

TMC national General Secretary Abhishek Banerjee. File.   | Photo Credit: PTI

TMC national General Secretary Abhishek Banerjee on Saturday claimed that voting for the Congress and Left Front would be in no way different from opting for the NOTA button as he sought to woo electorate here ahead of the October 30 byelection to four assembly seats.


He also slammed the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for "thrusting by-election" on two of the four seats that will go to polls.

Addressing a rally at Gosaba in South 24 Parganas, Mr. Banerjee pointed out that the byelection was necessitated here and in Khardah following the death of two TMC candidates, but the circumstance under which elections are being held in Shantipur and Dinhata are different.

"Winning BJP candidates Jagannath Sarkar (Shantipur) and Nisith Pramanik (Dinhata) resigned as MLAs even after being elected by people. They dishonoured the verdict of people to retain parliamentary berths. The BJP is seeking votes again in those two seats. They will be rejected by people,” he claimed.

The senior TMC leader also asserted that his party will make a “4-0 sweep” in the byelections.

Hitting out at the Congress and the Left, he said the two parties had firmed up alliances with the aim to stop Mamata Banerjee from winning elections, and ended up as “losers”.

"Over the past seven years, the Congress had only conceded defeat to the BJP all over the country, while Mamata Banerjee thwarted all challenges posed by communal and undemocratic BJP," he said.

"The Left and the Congress had even tied up with the ISF but the electorate of Bengal chose Mamata Banerjee over any other party. Voting for them is the same as pressing the NOTA button," the West Bengal ruling party's number two leader underlined.

The TMC supremo is emerging as the undisputed leader from Kashmir to Kanyakumari, the "spearhead" to fight and defeat the Modi-Shah regime in the next general election, Mr. Banerjee insisted.


"Our party is making its presence felt all over the country. It has established its place among the top four to five national parties. We will win the assembly polls in Goa in a few months from now; we will dislodge the Biplab Deb government in Tripura 2023," he contended.

Alleging that the BJP has "trampled democracy" in states where it is in power, Mr. Banerjee said, "Wherever the BJP has crushed opposition views, the TMC will go and fight them."

Holding the Biplab Deb government in Tripura responsible for assault on his party members, Mr. Banerjee noted that Rajya Sabha MP Sushmita Dev was “attacked in the state” by the BJP on Friday.

"Should that happen in a democracy? We will not cower down before them. We will drive out the BJP from Tripura, carrying a picture of Mamata Banerjee," he said.

Mr. Banerjee claimed that the BJP "harasses” anyone who airs views against them, with help from central agencies, but "they cannot silence the TMC".

"I was summoned several, times, interrogated for nine hours. You can interrogate me for hours and hours but that will not stop me from speaking against you (BJP leaders). If you slit my throat, I will still shout ‘Jai Hind’, ‘Jai Bangla’. Truth is on my side," he maintained.

Taking a dig at Home Minister Amit Shah, he said, "The former BJP national president and current home minister had promised to dole out  ₹2 lakh crore for the development of Sunderbans and carve out a separate district during his campaigns for assembly polls some months ago. They are still holding power in Delhi but you won't hear about any follow-up initiatives from them."

The Diamond Harbour MP further noted that Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, in contrast, "kept her promises and rolled out schemes such as Lakshmir Bhandar".

"Here lies the difference between the BJP and the TMC. No one got  ₹15 lakh in their bank account, as promised by Narendra Modi in 2014. But all our social welfare projects -- Krishakbandhu, Swastha Sathi, Kanyashree and Lakshmir Bhandar -- are benefitting crores of people already," he said.

Mr. Banerjee, who is also the nephew of the CM, continued its tirade against the Centre, stating that the Narendra Modi government did not release funds required for relief operations after back-to-back cyclones in West Bengal.

"Don’t worry, Mamata Banerjee will be on your side with all her might and resources," he said.

Hitting out at the Centre over its 100-crore vaccination feat, he quipped that the BJP-led NDA government "hit double centuries", the first one with the hike in prices of petrol and diesel.

In an apparent overture to Hindus, the TMC general said, "Our CM has given Rs 50,000 to every Durga Puja committee. She is the one who made sure people get to celebrate Durga Puja, despite economic stress.

"She wants people to celebrate all festivals -- from Durga puja to Kali Puja and Chhat, from Eid to Christmas. She believes in universal brotherhood," he added.

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Printable version | Jan 20, 2022 5:33:00 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/tmc-leader-abhishek-banerjee-hits-out-at-bjp-congress-and-left/article37136757.ece

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