TMC going solo: Rivalry with Congress can hurt INDIA - The Tribune India

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TMC going solo

Rivalry with Congress can hurt INDIA

TMC going solo

Mamata Banerjee West Bengal CM. File photo



THE Trinamool Congress (TMC), a key constituent of the Congress-helmed INDIA bloc, has decided to go solo in the Lok Sabha polls in West Bengal. The failure of the TMC and the Congress to negotiate a seat-sharing agreement has laid bare fissures in the Opposition grouping. In another embarrassment for INDIA, TMC supremo Mamata Banerjee has declared that her party would confront not only the BJP but also the Congress and the CPM in the state. Putting on a brave face, Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge has said: ‘Our doors are always open and an alliance can happen any time before the withdrawal (of nominations).’ State Congress chief Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, however, has claimed that Mamata has distanced herself from INDIA so as not to antagonise PM Narendra Modi.

In the 2019 Lok Sabha polls in Bengal, the TMC had won 22 seats out of 42, while the BJP had made major inroads by clinching 18; the Congress had won two seats. The seat-sharing talks proved futile this time as the Congress wanted more than two seats for its candidates, while the TMC was not keen on ceding ground. The bitter rivalry between the two INDIA allies was starkly visible last year when Left-backed Congress candidate Bayron Biswas defeated the TMC’s Debashish Banerjee in the Sagardighi bypoll. Later, Biswas switched over to the Trinamool camp, much to the Congress’ chagrin.

Already on a sticky wicket over the Sandeshkhali outrage, the ruling TMC might find it tough to brave the BJP’s onslaught on its own. The Congress has complicated matters by trying to bite off more than it can chew in Bengal. This will have implications for INDIA’s national prospects in the Lok Sabha elections.

#Congress #INDIA bloc #Lok Sabha #Trinamool Congress #West Bengal


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