West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee led the charge against the BJP a day after the party swept four states. Calling the mammoth mandate for the saffron party “not a popular but a machinery mandate”, Mamata Banerjee stressed that winning elections “using central agencies and through dictatorship” won’t catapult BJP to a 2024 win.
“This is not a popular mandate, this is a machinery mandate. Just because they have won a few states using central agencies and through dictatorship, they may be jumping with joy, thinking they will win 2024, too! But that is not going to be so easy,” she told India Today TV.
“Who can predict what will happen after two years? Destiny is destiny. There is a difference between destiny and destination!” she argued.
She soon trained her guns on the Electronic Voting Machine, saying, “There were so many issues regarding the EVM. Even Varanasi’s District Magistrate was suspended.”
“I think Akhilesh Yadav was forcibly defeated. I must challenge this. The EVMs must be put through forensic tests,” she said. Mamata Banerjee had extended her support from her to Akhilesh Yadav’s Samajwadi Party, attending a rally in Varanasi and not fielding candidates to better the SP’s chances.
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The chief minister refused to speak about the Congress’ poll debacle. “I am not saying anything about the Congress,” she stated. The Trinamool chairperson had sent shockwaves across the Congress camp in December with her “the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) does not exist anymore” remark. The attack didn’t stop there. Editorials in the TMC mouthpiece “Jago Bangla” continued its criticism of the grand old party, writing: “Congress is a failure… UPA is over…” It even went to say that the Congress “has locked itself in the freezer ”.
The Bengal chief minister accused the BJP of not letting her government conduct daily business and for being a sore loser in her state. “BJP may be showing off but they lost here (in Bengal). They won’t allow us to present the Budget in the Assembly,” she said.
“I have never since this type of attitude,” she wheeled, adding, “I have been a Rail minister and have presented several Budgets. No one does that. They (BJP) have no courtesy.” Her comments from her come after the BJP MLAs disrupted the Budget session in Bengal, protesting against the suspension of two MLAs at the start of the session.
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She also tore into her former close aid and now rival Suvendu Adhikary. “People who can’t win in their own wards are trying to indulge in a flop show,” she said. Adhikary, once considered Mamata Banerjee’s right-hand man, quit the Trinamool Congress right before the 2019 Bengal Assembly election and joined the BJP. He even defeated the chief minister from Nandigram, prompting a bypoll within six months for Banerjee to retain the top job. She won from Bhawanipore with a difference of over 58,000 votes.
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