Kolkata, Jan 19 : The way ahead for the INDIA bloc in West Bengal got further complicated on Friday as Trinamool Congress supremo and Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee told her party’s rank and file that unless given the due importance in it, her party will field candidates from all the state’s 42 Lok Sabha constituencies.
The message was given at an organisation meeting of Trinamool at the Chief Minister’s residence at Kalighat in south Kolkata, said a senior party leader who was present at the meeting.
The meeting was mainly in relation to the party’s strategy for the polls in case of minority-dominated Murshidabad district, which is traditionally considered as a Congress stronghold.
It is learnt that without naming the state Congress President, Adhir Ranjan Chodhury, who is a five-time Lok Sabha member from Baharampur constituency, the Chief Minister reportedly claimed that he will no more be a factor in Murshidabad in 2024.
Political observers said that this approach of the Chief Minister is a counter to Chowdhury’s recent statement where he challenged Banerjee to dare to contest against him from the seat in the 2024 Lok Sabha polls.
“She also directed her district leadership to start early preparation for contesting from all the three Lok Sabha constituencies in Murshidabad district,” said the leader.
According to him, the Chief Minister’s logic in the issue was clear that since the Trinamool is an important constituent of the opposition bloc, it will have no other option to go alone in 2024 if the party is not given due importance.
In the meeting, Banerjee also reportedly issued a note of caution regarding the growing instances of factionalism between two groups in Murshidabad. She also cautioned of strong disciplinary action against those who are encouraging factionalism, sources aware of the development said.