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CPI(M)ś Salim criticizes TMC and BJP, Highlights Alleged Divisive Tactics at Ínsaf Rally in Kolkata


Mohammed Salim, the state general secretary of the Communist Party of India (Marxist), passionately criticized both the ruling Trinamool Congress (TMC) in West Bengal and the BJP-led NDA government in Delhi. In his view, these political entities were not only "misleading" the public but also neglecting crucial "livelihood issues" through the implementation of corrupt practices and divisive communal politics.

 

Salim delivered these strong remarks at the impactful Ínsaf Rally, held at Kolkata's Brigade Ground on Sunday, organized by the Democratic Youth Federation of India (DYFI), the youth wing of the Communist Party of India (Marxist). The rally, strategically arranged before the Lok Sabha elections, aimed to engage and influence the youth of West Bengal. Notable speakers at the rally included Himagnaraj Bhattacharya, AA Rahim, and Minakshi Mukherjee, prominent leaders of DYFI.

 

Highlighting the alleged divisive tactics, Salim asserted, "Those who once tried to sow the seeds of division among the populace based on religion, caste, and creed are again doing it in the name of Pakistan and the Pulwama attacks." He emphasized that the central BJP government prioritized the interests of large corporate entities over the livelihoods of ordinary citizens.

 

Accusing the TMC and BJP of having a "tacit understanding," Salim suggested that this understanding allowed the TMC to shield its leaders from federal investigative authorities like the Enforcement Directorate (ED) and the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI). He expressed concern about the rising corruption within the TMC since the BJP took center stage in 2014, rhetorically asking, "Chowkidar aggar chor hain to pakkadega koun?" (Who would arrest if the watchman turns out to be a thief?)

 

Taking a direct swipe at Mamata Banerjee, the Chief Minister of West Bengal, and her nephew Abhishek Banerjee, a TMC MP, Salim claimed that Prime Minister Narendra Modi had invited Mamata Banerjee to the G20 dinner in Delhi instead of Congress President Sonia Gandhi. He accused Mamata Banerjee of making a desperate attempt to safeguard her family members from legal scrutiny.

 

Interestingly, Salim made no mention of the INDIA bloc, which includes both the TMC and the CPI(M). Responding to queries about this omission, a high-ranking CPI(M) official explained, "We organized the rally under the banner of our youth organization because it's too early to comment on the future of the India bloc. We aim to avoid discussing the party's political understanding at the federal level during this event to broaden our outreach."

 

During the rally, Minakshi Mukherjee, the state secretary of DYFI, emphasized a united fight for rights to food, employment, and integrity. She shared a letter from Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee, the former Chief Minister of West Bengal and the first state secretary of DYFI, reaffirming their commitment to the struggle.

 

Other leaders like AA Rahim highlighted issues of corruption and unemployment, claiming that 23.5% of young Indians faced severe unemployment. Himagnaraj Bhattacharya, the general secretary of CPI(M), declared, "Only Leftists are fighting against communal forces and the corrupt government of West Bengal."

 

With seasoned CPI(M) leaders and young activists leading the charge, the DYFI's Insaf rally sought to introduce fresh faces and strengthen the party's position in West Bengal ahead of the upcoming Lok Sabha elections. Reflecting on their strategy, Mohammed Salim remarked, "We are planting flowers for the future. We demonstrated our strength in the panchayat elections. The Lok Sabha elections will be the decisive event; that was only a trailer."

 

Acknowledging the party's decline in support after the Left Front's loss in the 2011 Assembly Elections, a top CPI(M) official noted the growth in SFI and DYFI memberships since 2021. Youth leaders like Srijan Bhattacharya and Minakshi Mukherjee are gaining prominence, indicating a rejuvenation within the party.

 

In response to CPI(M)'s allegations, TMC MP Abhishek Banerjee dismissed them, stating, "Some say 'insaaf' (justice), some say 'nyay' (law), and others say 'sabka sath, sabka vikash'." He asserted that everyone is following the TMC's lead.

 

Contrary to the CPI(M)'s optimism, BJP leader Samik Bhattacharya expressed skepticism, stating, "It may be true that the CPI(M) drew a large crowd, but people will only vote for the BJP because the TMC can only be defeated by the BJP in our state." The political landscape in West Bengal appears poised for an intense battle as these narratives unfold in the run-up to the elections.

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