Kolkata: Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee on Wednesday urged all the regional parties to come together to defeat the BJP in the 2024 Lok Sabha elections.

Addressing a meeting after being re-elected unopposed as the TMC chairperson, Banerjee took an apparent dig at the Congress, saying if it wants to “sit back” because of its “ego”, her party cannot be blamed.

“We want all regional parties to come together and defeat the BJP in 2024. We want everybody to come together and fight against the BJP and defeat it. Our motto is the BJP has to be defeated. If we can defeat CPI(M) in West Bengal, we can also defeat BJP nationally,” Banerjee said.

The Congress had helped the BJP to win the polls in Meghalaya and Chandigarh, she alleged.

“We want those who are opposed to BJP should come on one platform, but if someone wants to sit back because of ego then we can’t be blamed. We will fight against the BJP alone if needed,” she said.

The majority of the Congress MLAs in Meghalaya switched to the TMC, making it the main opposition party. In Chandigarh, BJP managed to bag the mayor seat as Congress councillors abstained from voting for the post, after poll results threw up a hung house with AAP winning most of the seats.

Banerjee, the chief minister of West Bengal, termed the Union Budget a “big bluff” to fool the masses.

“It’s a big bluff which has nothing for the common people. Only two people are playing with the future of India. People of this country want jobs and food, they don’t want diamonds,” she said.

“Even awards like Padma Bhushan have been politicised. The narrative of politics has changed over the years. How can a veteran singer such as Sandhya Mukhopadhyay be insulted in such a way? She is presently hospitalised… If you speak out against them, they will threaten you and tap your phones using Pegasus,” the chief minister alleged.

Banerjee said she would ask her party MPs to raise the issue of India’s relations with its neighbours such as Nepal, Bhutan and Bangladesh in Parliament. PTT PNT SOM

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