Following a bitter electoral war in West Bengal between the Bharatiya Janata Party and the Trinamool Congress, which ended in the TMC’s favor, a new battle is building in the north-eastern state of Tripura.
Also read: Assam CM Himanta Biswa Sarma meets PM Narendra Modi over the border dispute at the parliament
How did it all start?
It began following the arrest of 22 persons from election strategist Prashant Kishores’ iPAC team last month, as well as the detention and attack on TMC leaders, which led to the party’s general secretary Abhishek Banerjee visiting the state twice in the recent fortnight.
Mamata Banerjee’s accused on Amit Shah
Mamata Banerjee, the Chief Minister of Bengal and the head of the TMC, has accused Home Minister Amit Shah of planning the attack on TMC leaders.
The Bengal Chief Minister told the media reporters while she visited her injured party Khadar at the SSKM Hospital, “These attacks happened in front of the Tripura police and they remained mute spectators. Tripura chief minister does not dare to order such attacks and it has not happened without the approval of the home minister.”
A battle against the most popular slogan ‘Khela Hobe’
While the TMC plans to go head-to-head with its popular slogan, “Khela Hobe,” NEDA convenor Himanta Biswa Sarma of the BJP has issued a robust rebuttal.
“Khela Hobe will not work in Tripura. It may have got TMC victory in Bengal but in Tripura or any other place, only a certain section of the Bengalis would resonate with the slogan,” Sarma told News18.
Assam Chief Minister criticizes Mamata Banerjee
Assam Chief Minister criticized Mamata Banerjee by saying that she is enjoying a “period of glitter” in Bengal.
According to Sharma, “Mamata Banerjee is basking in the limelight following her victory in Bengal, but this will pass quickly. The BJP has established itself as a powerful political force in Bengal, and it will continue to do so.”
“People will remember that Mamata Banerjee lost her election recently in Bengal and she will not be able to explain as to how a politician who has lost his or her election would be able to guarantee people of their win in the days to come,” he said.
The political scenario in Tripura
In the north-eastern state, both parties will strive to win Bengali voters. Outsiders make up about 69 percent of Tripura’s population, with Bengalis accounting for the majority.
In 2018, the BJP was able to depose the CPI-M government and install Biplab Deb as the new chief minister. The state will hold elections in 2023, and political experts anticipate that the campaign would follow the same pattern as Bengal’s.
The TMC is attempting to emulate the saffron party’s success in Bengal by establishing a presence even before the election season begins.
The TMC recently established a state unit and is now seeking to form coalitions with like-minded politicians, such as Pradeep Dev Burman and other smaller regional parties with whom Abhishek Banerjee has just met.
Experts say the games have officially begun now that the BJP and TMC’s feud has spread beyond Bengal’s boundaries.