TMC continues to expand beyond West Bengal

TMC continues to expand beyond West Bengal

The Trinamool Congress has been trying to expand to other states across the country ever since it stalled the BJP’s juggernaut

Even as West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee is planning to visit Varanasi in poll-bound Uttar Pradesh after New Year’s Day, her Trinamool Congress is continuing to explore options to expand beyond West Bengal – even in the southern States.

The Trinamool Congress initially sought to keep away from the Congress during the winter session of Parliament, but the suspension of the opposition MPs from the Rajya Sabha forced it to join the other opposition parties to protest against what they called the dictatorial attitude of the government led by the Bharatiya Janata Party at the Centre.

But with the parliamentary session now over, the Trinamool Congress is now likely to go full steam ahead to expand its footprints beyond West Bengal, even if it has to do so at the expense of the Congress.

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Sources in the Trinamool Congress said that the party was still in touch with the Congress veteran and Health Minister of Chhattisgarh, T S Singh Deo, who appeared to be unhappy over the reluctance of Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel to vacate the top office to make way for him to take over. Though Singh Deo himself dismissed the speculation over his leaving the Congress and joining the Trinamool Congress, Banerjee’s party is likely to keep its door open for him and make a fresh overture to him, possibly after the assembly elections in the five states. The Trinamool Congress also reached out to Tamil Manila Congress in Tamil Nadu, as well as some disgruntled leaders of the Congress in Telangana.

Banerjee is likely to visit Varanasi, where late Congress stalwart Kamalapati Tripathi’s grandson Rajeshpati Tripathi and great-grandson Laliteshpati Tripathi already joined her Trinamool Congress. She may offer obeisance at the Kashi Vishwanath temple too, according to the sources in the Trinamool Congress. It is, however, still not clear if she will take part in any political event during her visit to Varanasi – a stronghold of the Bharatiya Janata Party and the parliamentary constituency of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

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The Trinamool Congress has been trying to expand to other states across the country ever since it stalled the BJP’s juggernaut and had a landslide victory in the assembly elections in West Bengal earlier this year. The party has been trying to emerge as a formidable political force in Goa, although Congress has accused it of actually trying to split votes to make it easier for the ruling BJP to retain power.

Apart from opening its door for grandson and great-grandson of Kamalapati Tripathi, the Trinamool Congress, however, has not yet made any move to enter the political scene in Uttar Pradesh, which will also go to polls along with Goa, Manipur, Punjab and Uttarakhand in February-March 2022. Banerjee said during her last visit to New Delhi that she and other leaders of her party would be ready to campaign for the Samajwadi Party in Uttar Pradesh if Akhilesh Yadav asked them to do so in the northern state.

The Trinamool Congress supremo may also visit Haryana, where her party recently opened its first office after a former Congress MP from the state, Ashok Tanwar, joined it.

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