In a parallel event to Ram Mandir pran-pratishtha on Monday (22 January), West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee organised an all-faith rally in Kolkata, where she not only targeted the BJP but also INDI Alliance parties.
While the TMC supremo alleged that the BJP is trying to "politicise" religion ahead of the Lok Sabha elections, she also expressed her displeasure over CPI(M), her main rival in Bengal, "controlling" INDI Alliance meetings.
Notably, seat-sharing talks in West Bengal are stalled as TMC refused to meet the Congress' five-member national alliance committee after offering two seats to the Congress, which Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury vehemently opposed.
Speaking at the Park Circus Maidan, Banerjee highlighted that none of the Opposition leaders came out on the streets to counter the BJP narrative. Interestingly, TMC had earlier said that its rally had nothing to do with the Ayodhya event.
She also pointed out that while the name I.N.D.I.A. was her idea, she feels sad to see CPI(M) controlling its meetings. She also expressed that "some people do not want to listen" to her on seat-sharing.
"I tell them not to help the BJP... If I can have the guts to take on BJP why can’t you? I have shown courage. So many political parties, but did they show this courage?", Banerjee was quoted as saying by the Indian Express.
Without naming Rahul Gandhi, she said, "Somebody went to a temple and thinks that is sufficient. It is not so. I am the only one who took out a rally and visited a temple, a gurdwara, a church and a mosque."
Nishtha Anushree is Senior Sub-editor at Swarajya. She tweets at @nishthaanushree.
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