Why is Mamata Banerjee suddenly trying to distance herself from Congress and the Left Front over the CAA-NRC issue?

A curious development is taking place in the political space of the Opposition. Congress, headed by its president Sonia Gandhi, held a meeting on Monday against the Citizens Amendment Act (CAA) and the proposed NRC. The meeting in the Parliament complex was aimed at consolidating the opposition unit against the BJP, but instead exposed the failures between the opposition, as key players such as Akhilesh Yadav, Mayawati, Arvind Kejriwal, the head of DMK MK Stalin and the chief minister of West Bengal, Mamata Banerjee, stayed. far.

Congress was obviously unhappy. He accused regional teams of putting their own interests above the ‘national’ interest. In return, regional satraps accused Congress of trying to steal credit and kidnap the movement.

It is clear that the unity of the opposition is hampered by the deficit of mutual trust, but some motivations are deeper. Take Mamata for example.

Among all those absent, the absence of the supreme TMC was very interesting because their motivations are not immediately apparent. Congress is not an important player in West Bengal, unlike New Delhi, and therefore, Mamata was not driven by compulsions that confronted Kejriwal. Since the Delhi elections are a three-way struggle between the ruling AAP, BJP and Congress, any truck with the Congress in CAA / NRC can damage Kejriwal’s chances of being re-elected.

The Samajwadi Party (SP) and the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) distrust Congress for different reasons. The SP still believes that its alliance with Congress during the 2017 Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections was a mistake that caused lasting damage. ‘Behenji’ Mayawati is still upset with Congress for trying to steal her MLAs in Rajasthan.

Mamata, however, is playing a completely different game, perhaps under the guidance of survey strategist Prashant Kishor. Few will give credit to her public statement that she chose to stay away because the left and Congress unleashed violence in the state during the January 9 union strike. In the national strike, activists from Congress and the left clashed with police in Bengal, but it is unlikely that partial incidents of violence and arson or the placement of some crude bombs on train tracks caused Mamata to take Such a drastic step.

    Why is Mamata Banerjee suddenly trying to distance herself from Congress and the Left Front over the CAA-NRC issue?

The chief minister of West Bengal, Mamata Banerjee, skipped the opposition meeting led by Congress. fake images

His rhetoric also borders on the exaggerated reaction. Promising that he will not allow Left and Congress to make the strike successful in Bengal, Mamata said: “Those who have no political existence in the state are trying to ruin their economy by pursuing cheap policies such as strikes.”

Does a marginalized CPIM and a Congress in distress have enough influence to “ruin” Bengal’s economy through a strike? This is such a fantastic theory as Mamata’s stated reason for boycotting the opposition meeting led by Congress in New Delhi against CAA / NRC when he said: “I have decided to boycott the meeting called by Sonia Gandhi on January 13 in New Delhi. as I do, not supporting the violence that the left and Congress unleashed in West Bengal yesterday (Wednesday) … You don’t tell me how to fight against CAA … If necessary, I will fight alone. “

Some commentators have interpreted it as Mamata’s attempt not to let Congress take credit for the protests against the CAA and not give up leadership space on this issue. Mamata’s calculations are different.

In particular, his decision not to attend the anti-CAA meeting in New Delhi and repress the strikers on January 9 allowed local leaders of the CPIM and Congress to claim that the prime minister is “hand in hand” with the BJP and is acting on Narendra Modi and Amit Shah ask for it. The leader of the CMF, Sujan Chakraborty, was quoted as saying: Mamata “is basically accountable to his bosses in Delhi at BJP. He is frustrated after the band called by the Left Congress unions became successful.”

This position in Bengal should give us an idea about the ongoing political game in West Bengal. The Mamata movement in trying to publicly put a certain distance between the TMC and the CPM-Congress alliance in the state is an intelligent attempt to revitalize the struggling political forces so that the anti-TMC vote is divided instead of consolidating in favor of the BJP, as was evident during the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, where the BJP emerged as the main opposition force in the state with 18 of 42 seats.

The general elections, which resulted in an overwhelming return mandate for the NDA government led by Modi, show that the percentage of BJP votes had skyrocketed to 40.2 percent from 17 percent in 2014. Interestingly , while the TMC seats were reduced to 22, their percentage of votes remained intact, even registering an increase from 39.7 percent in 2014 to 43.3 percent in 2019. Clearly, TMC suffered due to the consolidation of anti-TMC votes in the corner of BJP. The participation in the Left Front vote crashed to 7.5 percent in 2019 from almost 30 percent in 2014, while Congress also registered a decrease of 9.6 percent to 5.5 percent.

Mamata would have carefully analyzed the results, as would Congress and the left. While the last two are expected to form an alliance in the 2021 Assembly polls, that may not be enough if their participation in the vote continues to bleed. This is bad news for Mamata, who is also concerned about the presence of Asaduddin Owaisi’s AIMIM that affects her Muslim voting bank.

The calculation of Mamata, therefore, is somehow propping up the Left Front and the Congress that is now emaciated and marginalized playing a pantomime of false rivalry with them, so that at least a little anti-TMC votes move away from BJP. That is why Mamata will not care when the left and Congress accuse her of being in a “secret pact” with the BJP because it also serves her purpose. You can even encourage such a charge. Mamata runs the risk of letting the Left Front eat the votes against the BJP, but that is a risk that the supreme TMC will voluntarily take.

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