Congress, CPM reject Mamata Banerjee's offer to jointly combat BJP, say her policies helped saffron party in Bengal

Kolkata: West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee Wednesday reached out to opposition Congress and CPM to join her fight against the BJP in the state but the two parties rejected her appeal saying her policies are responsible for the saffron party's growth.

Speaking during the debate on the governor's address in the state Assembly, she said the BJP is trying to run a parallel government in the state and parties like the Congress and the CPM should join hands with the TMC to fight against it.

 Congress, CPM reject Mamata Banerjees offer to jointly combat BJP, say her policies helped saffron party in Bengal

File image of West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee. PTI

"The people of the state are witnessing in Bhatpara what happens if you vote for the BJP. I feel all of us (TMC, Congress and CPM) should come together in the fight against the BJP. It doesn't mean we have to join hands politically. But on common issues at the state and the national levels, we can come together," she said.

The Trinamool Congress supremo said all the 23 opposition parties should unitedly fight against malfunctioning of EVMs.

"Before elections we (opposition parties) had tried to raise our voice against the use of EVMs. We had even approached the Supreme Court, but it didn't yield any result. We can take up the matter again and move court," she said.

Reminding the Congress about the importance of TMC's support in the floor of the Parliament, Banerjee urged Leader of Opposition and senior Congress leader Abdul Mannan to stop abusing her party in Bengal and concentrate on fighting the BJP in the state.

Reacting to her appeal, Mannan said, "We don't need lessons from Mamata on ways to fight the BJP. It is due to her policies that the BJP has gained ground in Bengal. She should first accept that it is due to her fault that the BJP has made inroads in Bengal."

CPM legislative party leader Sujan Chakraborty too echoed Mannan's views.

State BJP president Dilip Ghosh said Bannerjee's appeal to the Congress and the CPM is a reflection of the "fear psychosis" that has gripped the TMC.

"It only shows that the TMC and Mamata Banerjee are afraid about the growth of the BJP in Bengal. She has very well understood that she is going to lose the next assembly elections in the state.

"The CPM, Congress and TMC have been together at the national level so we are not at all afraid if they join hands in the state. Rather, it will act as an advantage for BJP in Bengal," Ghosh said.

Assembly elections in West Bengal are due in 2021.

The BJP had recently won 18 of the 42 Lok Sabha seats in the state and bagged 40.5 per cent vote share - a record jump of 23 per cent from the last general elections when it had won only two seats.

Although the TMC managed to increase its vote share by four percent, its seat share came down to 22 from 34 in last general elections.

The CPM-led Left Front drew a blank, whereas the Congress tally was down to two from four it had in the 2014 Lok Sabha polls.

Updated Date: Jun 26, 2019 22:55:50 IST