Mamata Banerjee’s Solo Act Shocks INDI Alliance

Banerjee's announcement comes a day after she traded criticism with Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, who called her an opportunist

In a significant setback for the opposition’s “INDI Alliance”, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee declared on Wednesday that her Trinamool Congress (TMC) party will contest the upcoming Lok Sabha elections alone in the state. She mentioned failed seat-sharing talks with the Congress, a key member of the bloc, as the reason for her decision to go it alone in the crucial polls.

Banerjee’s announcement comes a day after she traded criticism with Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, who called her an opportunist and stated that the party would contest the Lok Sabha elections without her assistance. Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury’s comments followed reports that the TMC is likely to field candidates in all the 42 Lok Sabha seats in West Bengal.


Former Congress president Rahul Gandhi attempted to reconcile with Mamata Banerjee, stating that she was “close to him” and Chowdhury’s comments on seat-sharing talks “won’t matter.” However, Banerjee expressed her displeasure with the Congress, indicating that Rahul Gandhi’s olive branch had not made any impact. She claimed the Congress did not even inform her about their planned Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra in West Bengal.

The Bharat Jodo Nyaya Yatra, currently in Assam, is set to enter West Bengal through Bakshirhat in Cooch Behar district on January 25. It will traverse several districts before reaching Bihar on January 29 and re-enter Bengal on January 31 through Malda and travel via Murshidabad, both strongholds of the Congress.

Banerjee’s decision throws a wrench into the opposition’s efforts to present a united front against the ruling BJP in the Lok Sabha polls. She stressed the need for regional parties to take on the BJP in their respective areas, suggesting that the Congress focus on fighting the BJP in 300 seats.

However, she warned that interference from the Congress in regional matters might lead regional parties to “rethink” their approach. Banerjee also raised questions about the leadership and unity of the opposition alliance, openly questioning the Congress’s role.

Taking a dig at the INDIA bloc, BJP spokesperson Shehzad Poonawalla said the opposition alliance was full of confusion, corruption, and always busy tamping down internal discord. Poonawalla emphasized the lack of a clear flag, agenda, leader, policy, or intention within the alliance.

At the fourth huddle of the INDIA bloc last December, Trinamool proposed that the Congress should contest nearly 300 seats where it is in direct competition with the BJP. In the remaining seats, TMC proposed that Congress should support regional parties. After the meeting, Congress chief Mallikarjun Kharge said all member parties of the alliance would work together on seat sharing.

You might also be interested in –Senior Congress leader slams Mamata Banerjee for attending G20 dinner, TMC replies back

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