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regular-article-logo Sunday, 21 April 2024

Abhishek Banerjee fires up TMC cadre with 'Janagarjan Rally' announcement for March 10

For two years, Bengal has been deprived. March 10 will be the trailer for the anti-people leaders of BJP and those who oppose Bengal, says Banerjee as as he seeks to bolster support before the upcoming Lok Sabha elections

Arnab Ganguly Calcutta Published 25.02.24, 06:37 PM
Abhishek Banerjee

Abhishek Banerjee File photo

The Trinamul Congress on Sunday set a date with the Brigade Parade ground which by all appearance will be the launch of the party’s campaign for the 2024 Lok Sabha polls.

The furious-sounding Janagarjan rally of March 10 was announced from the X (formerly Twitter) handle of the party’s all India general secretary Abhishek Banerjee with the 2021 Assembly election slogan of Khela Hobe (Game is on).

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“For two years, Bengal has been deprived. March 10 will be the trailer for the anti-people leaders of BJP and those who oppose Bengal. The film will be released during elections,” Abhishek said, while speaking to mediapersons at an event on Sunday evening. “For two years a conspiracy has been going on to deprive Bengal. They have stopped funds for two financial years. In no other state has this happened. If the BJP leaders can provide one evidence that funds were released for two consecutive financial years of 2022-23 and 2023-24, I will quit politics.”

“Between 2014-19, there were 34 Trinamul MPs, no funds to Bengal were stopped. In 2019, 18 MPs from the BJP were elected from Bengal and funds were stopped. That is why we call them outsider,” said Abhishek.

Last October Abhishek had held a dharna outside the Raj Bhawan on the same issue.

“Abhishek had plans to address a public rally at the Brigade Parade ground on the issue of centre not releasing funds for Bengal. After Mamata di started her dharna earlier this month on the same issue, a new date has been set,” said a Trinamul leader close to Abhishek.

Curiously the Brigade rally for March 10 has been called at 11 am, as there is a possibility that the Election Commission of India could announce the Lok Sabha poll dates on the same day.

The full bench of the central poll commission will visit Bengal to discuss the poll preparations on March 3. The ECI has already sought 920 companies of central armed police forces (CAPF) for Bengal from the ministry of home affairs, the highest in the country.

The EC team's visit to Bengal will be held between the three rallies of Modi scheduled for Bengal in six days starting from Hooghly’s Arambagh on March 1, Krishnagar March 2 and Barasat March 6, three seats that the BJP believes it can wrest from the Trinamul.

“In the two and a half years since the Assembly polls were held has the prime minister held one meeting for the people of the three constituencies where he will address the rallies? It is Mamata Banerjee and Trinamul which has been on the streets during any crisis,” Abhishek said.

While the Left Front was in power, the most important political event in the Trinamul calendar was the annual rally on July 21 at the centre of Calcutta.

After coming to power in May 2011, Mamata shifted the July 21 rally to Brigade Parade ground.

On January 20 2019, Mamata had held a rally at the Brigade Parade ground attended by 25 leaders from 23 parties across the country to oust the BJP. Most of the leaders who attended that meeting are now part of the Indian National Developmental Inclusive Alliance bloc.

When asked if leaders from other parties would be invited for the March 10 rally, Abhishek said: “Our fight is for rights of Bengal. We are mobilizing the people of Bengal, not any political party. Whoever wants to join us in the fight for the rights of Bengal are welcome to join us.”

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