West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Monday left for Lucknow to campaign for Samajwadi Party (SP) and gave the call to defeat BJP in the coming Uttar Pradesh assembly poll. Banerjee left for Lucknow this evening.
She will be holding a joint press conference with Akhilesh Yadav, the national president of SP and a virtual rally in Lucknow on February 8, according to sources in the party. ”Akhilesh Yadav has invited me to go there and to campaign for SP. We (TMC) want BJP to be defeated and Akhilesh to win Uttar Pradesh. All of us should support him in the fight against the BJP. That is the reason we have decided not to contest in Uttar Pradesh this time,” Banerjee, also the TMC president, told reporters before leaving for Lucknow.
Banerjee said she will also visit Varanasi later in February but the date is yet to be fixed.
The fiesty TMC chief said though the party is contesting only in Goa in the February-March assembly poll in five states, it will contest the 2024 Lok Sabha election in Punjab.
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Reacting to the development, Leader of Opposition in West Bengal assembly Suvendu Adhikari wondered whether SP supports the post-poll violence that was unleashed in the state after TMC’s assembly poll victory last year.
”The BJP will return to power in Uttar Pradesh. And we would like to know whether Samajwadi Party supports the post-poll violence that was unleashed by TMC in Bengal? If no, then they (SP) should condemn it,” the BJP leader said.
During the high octane West Bengal assembly poll, the SP had not contested and extended its support to the ruling TMC.
Akhilesh Yadav shares a very cordial relationship with Mamata Banerjee and had even attended the grand opposition meeting hosted by the TMC supremo in January, 2019.