‘Mamata, not Rahul alternative to Modi’

Kolkata: The bonhomie between the Congress and the Trinamool Congress (TMC) has become a question mark after the TMC claimed that Mamata Banerjee, and not Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, has emerged as the face of the Opposition against Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Trinamool Congress mouthpiece ‘Jago Bangla’ on Friday front-paged a lead article saying Rahul Gandhi hasn’t succeeded and Mamata Banerjee was the only alternative to Narendra Modi.

The article — quoting party seniors, including TMC’s Lok Sabha leader Sudip Bandyopadhyay, speaking at a closed-door party conference on Wednesday — said while Congress was integral to the opposition bloc, Rahul didn’t succeed to emerge as Modi’s alternative despite several chances. Trinamool will start a campaign with Mamata as Modi’s alternative, it added.

The headline in the lead report of the newspaper stated: ‘Rahul Gandhi paren-ni, Mamata-i bikolpo mukh (Rahul Gandhi could not, Mamata is the alternative face)’.

While the report, as well as TMC spokesperson Kunal Ghosh, clarified that the party does not want to discard the Congress and is only saying that the TMC chief could be the possible Opposition face to counter Modi, the state Congress hit back and said this will only help BJP and that the party ‘strongly opposes’ this stand.


NT Bureau